How are electric power generators and utilities in areas more vulnerable to the effects of climate change (e.g., coastal areas, small island nations, etc.) assessing their risks and preparing differently than generators in less vulnerable areas?
- November 30, 2018
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An unsurprising trend I've noticed in response to pending sea-level rise and increasingly frequent/intense storms, consequences widely connected to climate change, is that it's the governments in areas of the world that would be and are already the first to be impacted by these effects are the ones already making efforts to both fight climate change through clean energy transition and to plan for the worst should those effects continue. For example, lawmakers in Florida seem to be the most likely ones to start working on climate-related legislation, despite partisan affiliation. California and North Carolina, two coastal states, are leaders in the United States when it comes to solar power installations. Island nations across the Caribbean and Pacific have made ambitious commitments to renewable energy solutions because they recognize they could be the most vulnerable.
Given this trend of governments in coastal and vulnerable areas to be the first to make commitments to try and fight climate change, I'm curious if there are any similar effects across the energy industry. Are energy producers in the coastal areas more likely to already have plans in place for natural disasters or sea-level rise? Are landlocked areas less prepared for the future effects climate change might bring to the grid? If there is a difference in how utilities have prepared based on location, are there any lessons learned that can be applied to those lagging behind?