Decentralized energy systems for clean electricity access

| April 6, 2015 | Leave a Comment

electricity

Item Link: Access the Resource

Media Type: Article - Recent

Date of Publication: March 25, 2015

Year of Publication: 2015

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group, Macmillan Publishers Limited

Author(s): Peter Alstone, Dimitry Gershenson, Daniel M. Kammen

Journal: Nature Climate Change

Volume: 5

Pages: 305-314

Categories: , ,

Are there ways to address the needs of 1.3 billion people lacking electricity while also transitioning away from a carbonized energy system? In their paper, UC Berkeley researchers Peter Alstone, Dimitry Gershenson, and Daniel Kammen indicate that changes in the way power is produced and consumed could create a system that achieves both electrification and de-carbonization.

ABSTRACT: Innovative approaches are needed to address the needs of the 1.3 billion people lacking electricity, while simultaneously transitioning to a decarbonized energy system. With particular focus on the energy needs of the underserved, we present an analytic and conceptual framework that clarifies the heterogeneous continuum of centralized on-grid electricity, autonomous mini- or community grids, and distributed, individual energy services. A historical analysis shows that the present day is a unique moment in the history of electrification where decentralized energy networks are rapidly spreading, based on super-efficient end-use appliances and low-cost photovoltaics. We document how this evolution is supported by critical and widely available information technologies, particularly mobile phones and virtual financial services. These disruptive technology systems can rapidly increase access to basic electricity services and directly inform the emerging Sustainable Development Goals for quality of life, while simultaneously driving action towards low-carbon, Earth-sustaining, inclusive energy systems.

You can access the full article through the link above and read Glen Martin’s summary from California Magazine here.

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