IRENA concludes council meeting with call for a smarter approach to power-grid management

The International Renewable Energy Agency concluded its 6th Council meeting in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday and rolled out a new working paper on smart grid technologies.
IRENA concludes council meeting with call for a smarter approach to power-grid management

A total of 230 representatives from over 80 countries attended the two-day session in Abu Dhabi, nd such was their diversity that the proceedings were translated into English, Arabic, French and Spanish.

The focus of the meeting was to hash out the agency's work program for 2014 and 2015.

Among the initiatives to come out of the sessions were programs to address key challenges to the sector, including costs and grid infrastructure. Other discussions centered on the global potential of renewables.

 “IRENA’s mission is to support countries in their transition to a secure and clean energy future, and to help them identify a path to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy sources,” said IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Ami during the proceedings.

“With our expert and independent advice, IRENA is making an impact in the world of renewable energy by providing a range of reliable and well-understood services that create fresh momentum,” he added.

Initiatives discussed at the meeting included a first-of-its-kind web portal dedicated to renewable energy cost analysis, , which is free for all users; and a user’s guide on how to make optimal use of smart grid technologies for the integration of renewables into the grid, “Smart Grids & Renewables – A Guide for Effective Deployment.”

The paper provides a technical overview of smart-grid technologies as a way to accommodate larger shares of renewable energy in the electricity sector.

Smart Grids and Renewables: A Guide for Effective Deployment finds that:

Smart-grid technologies are already deployed cost-effectively in many instances today, enabling higher penetration of renewable energy sources.

Policies and regulations need to be developed for smart grids and renewable energy sources as soon as, if not before, large-scale deployment takes off.

The paper provides guidance to grid regulators, utilities and policy-makers on how to accelerate the deployment of smart grids for renewable energy. It provides a set of strategies to guide decision-makers in the transition to a smarter grid, along with a comprehensive overview of the smart-grid technologies available for the integration of renewable energy, including relatively high shares of variable sources such as solar and wind energy.

The consultations also included reviews of two major publications that will be published at IRENA’s 4th Assembly in January: the Agency’s institutional publication, REthinking Energy, and a roadmap to double the share of renewables in the energy mix by the end of the next decade, REMAP 2030.

Before heading back to their home countries, the council members finalized the agenda for IRENA’s 4th Assembly meeting, which will be held in Abu Dhabi on 18-19 January 2014. The Assembly kicks off the annual Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.

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International Renewable Energy Agency

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