Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies
Providing global warming solutions for California and the West.
Join CEERT Email Newsletter
Renewables Transmission Planning and Development
Transmission is to renewable energy resources what the transcontinental railroad was to opening up the West. We need to connect California’s renewable resource-rich regions—wind from Tehachapi, geothermal and wind from the Imperial Valley, concentrated solar power from the Mojave Desert, and to a lesser extent, bio-energy from the Central Valley—to the large coastal urban load centers of the state where it is needed. Making this vital connection will require a series of massive, multi-billion dollar investments in new transmission infrastructure. In conjunction with the California Energy Commission, we have been promoting a unique stakeholder collaboration project to expedite planning and development of vital transmission projects.
CEERT has continued to engage with the California Independent System Operator’s (CAISO’s) Transmission Planning process, laying the groundwork for a significant effort on the 2017-2018 Transmission Plan. A particular concern is the need to overcome the narrow set of future generation assumptions that the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) requires CAISO to use. At a minimum, we need CAISO to study the transmission needs for complying with a 50% Renewable Portfolio Standard, as well as 2030 GHG targets, which the CPUC has refused to include in its assumptions.
In addition, CEERT’s longstanding efforts to help resolve the dispute between CAISO and the Imperial Irrigation District have finally borne fruit. CAISO and IID have reached an agreement on a number of issues, including allocation of deliverability of imports from IID to CAISO. Even more significant, CAISO CEO Steve Berberich has become convinced of the need and value of additional geothermal development in the Salton Sea region to help balance California’s renewable portfolio and reduce our dependence on natural gas for reliability. He has agreed to meet with CPUC Commissioners and the Governor’s office to convey this message. At the same time, IID has pledged to drop its antitrust litigation against CAISO, and will no longer oppose regional grid expansion.
CEERT Grid Consultant
James Caldwell, Jr. is CEERT’s Senior Technical Consultant. His academic and professional background includes over fifty years of experience in the energy industry. For the past thirty years, he has specialized in renewable technology and project development including photovoltaic solar, concentrating solar thermal power, wind, biomass, and geothermal. He has been employed in technical and executive positions in the oil industry (Atlantic Richfield), the California utility industry (Los Angeles Department of Water and Power), the U.S. Department of Energy, renewable trade associations, and several large and small renewable re¬source developers. Jim has a BS degree in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University and an MBA from California State University at Long Beach.
Director of Grid Policy
Dr. Liz Anthony is CEERT’s Director of Grid Policy. She began at CEERT as a UC Davis ELIPPS Fellow while completing her doctoral research on a clean energy focused project at the University of California, Davis. While at UC Davis she also developed and taught renewable energy modules to local students through a National Science Foundation fellowship. She has since completed her PhD in Chemical Engineering and has joined CEERT full time.