Practices, Needs and Impediments in the Use of Weather/Climate Information in The Electricity Sector
The energy sector is highly dependent on climate conditions, whatever the particular field of activity, the production means, and the time scale. In developed countries, it is probably one of the most important users of Earth observation products and weather and climate forecasts. Extreme events such as heat waves or cold waves, wind storms or floods can of course have dramatic consequences on the production means or the electrical grid of a country. But “normal” day to day weather variations also have an impact on load level and energy production, transport and distribution management, as well as energy prices. In addition to short-term and medium-term management processes, long-term supply planning and production units dimensioning require climate archive data and future climate scenarios. In order to manage the risks associated with weather and climate conditions on all time scales from a few minutes to a century, reliable weather forecasts and climate information — past, present and future — are therefore crucial to reduce the uncertainty in supply and demand forecasts, as well as market dynamics. Examples based on the French electricity sector are presented, and suggested paths of progress are put forward.
KeywordsElectricity production demand forecast weather climate power system management
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