Response to 'Burden of proof': A comprehensive review of the feasibility of 100% renewable-electricity systems'

Tom Brown, Tobias Bischof-Niemz, Kornelis Blok, Christian Breyer, Henrik Lund, Brian Vad Mathiesen

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Abstract

A recent article ‘Burden of proof: A comprehensive review of the feasibility of 100% renewable-electricity systems’ claims that many studies of 100% renewable electricity systems do not demonstrate sufficient technical feasibility, according to the criteria of the article's authors (henceforth ‘the authors’). Here we analyse the authors’ methodology and find it problematic. The feasibility criteria chosen by the authors are important, but are also easily addressed at low economic cost, while not affecting the main conclusions of the reviewed studies and certainly not affecting their technical feasibility. A more thorough review reveals that all of the issues have already been addressed in the engineering and modelling literature. Nuclear power, which the authors have evaluated positively elsewhere, faces other, genuine feasibility problems, such as the finiteness of uranium resources and a reliance on unproven technologies in the medium- to long-term. Energy systems based on renewables, on the other hand, are not only feasible, but already economically viable and decreasing in cost every year.

Original languageEnglish
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Volume92
Pages (from-to)834-847
Number of pages14
ISSN1364-0321
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018

Keywords

  • Ancillary services
  • Power transmission
  • Reliability
  • Renewables
  • Solar power
  • Wind power

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