Department of Business Development and Technology

Gerardo Zarazua de Rubens

The non-technical barriers to large scale electricity networks: analysing the case for the US and EU supergrids

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Several studies have investigated large scale renewables, electricity networks and the potential for a supergrid, both in the US and the Europe. However, much of this work is focused on technical and economic barriers and under-recognises social, political and other non-technical aspects. This paper builds a conceptual framework to analyse the non-technical barriers, engagement of stakeholders and social risks to the proposed supergrids in the US and Europe. In doing so, we find 12 different non-technical situations (barriers) on each region that are present in the implementation of a supergrid, and can help guide the development of these economically efficient projects to address the social barriers and risks that they may face. From our results, we suggest a set of policy recommendations, parting with the introduction of an overarching body of governance for the coordination and implementation of the supergrid. This, we hope, provides a map and encouragement for policymakers, investors and stakeholders looking to develop and complete these megaprojects; recognising that some configuration of a supergrid is required to achieve a full penetration of renewables. Therefore, the results of this paper have a significant contribution in decarbonising energy production and supply systems, complying with national and international climate ambitions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number111018
JournalEnergy Policy
Volume135
ISSN0301-4215
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019

    Research areas

  • Electricity networks, Large scale infrastructure, Megaprojects, Non-technical barriers, Renewable energy, Supergrid

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