skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States

Abstract

Cities are powerful political and economic entities, and for many cities cultivating renewable energy penetration is sound economic policy. Many power plants in the United States will need to be replaced in the coming decades, so opportunities for renewable energy development are imminent. Although numerous cities have committed to sourcing 100% of their electricity needs from renewables, those cities represent a very small portion of cities across the United States. Due to their high energy consumption, cities have environmental impacts in areas far from their centre but are often unaware of these impacts and are thus unmotivated to undergo a transition to more sustainable energy sources. Herein we present a spatial framework for matching the supply of energy to demand across the electricity grid that allows for allocation of city energysheds. A city energyshed comprises the network of power plants that supply a given city and the amount of energy drawn from each plant. As a result, the power plant–city links revealed by energysheds allow for estimations of a city’s energy mix and environmental footprint from electricity consumption, and provide urban areas with insights into their energy sources that can catalyse renewable energy penetration for cities seeking to expand theirmore » renewable portfolio.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER)
OSTI Identifier:
1509579
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nature Sustainability
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2398-9629
Publisher:
Springer Nature
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY

Citation Formats

DeRolph, Christopher R., McManamay, Ryan A., Morton, April M., and Nair, Sujithkumar Surendran. City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1038/s41893-019-0271-9.
DeRolph, Christopher R., McManamay, Ryan A., Morton, April M., & Nair, Sujithkumar Surendran. City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States. United States. doi:10.1038/s41893-019-0271-9.
DeRolph, Christopher R., McManamay, Ryan A., Morton, April M., and Nair, Sujithkumar Surendran. Mon . "City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States". United States. doi:10.1038/s41893-019-0271-9. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1509579.
@article{osti_1509579,
title = {City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States},
author = {DeRolph, Christopher R. and McManamay, Ryan A. and Morton, April M. and Nair, Sujithkumar Surendran},
abstractNote = {Cities are powerful political and economic entities, and for many cities cultivating renewable energy penetration is sound economic policy. Many power plants in the United States will need to be replaced in the coming decades, so opportunities for renewable energy development are imminent. Although numerous cities have committed to sourcing 100% of their electricity needs from renewables, those cities represent a very small portion of cities across the United States. Due to their high energy consumption, cities have environmental impacts in areas far from their centre but are often unaware of these impacts and are thus unmotivated to undergo a transition to more sustainable energy sources. Herein we present a spatial framework for matching the supply of energy to demand across the electricity grid that allows for allocation of city energysheds. A city energyshed comprises the network of power plants that supply a given city and the amount of energy drawn from each plant. As a result, the power plant–city links revealed by energysheds allow for estimations of a city’s energy mix and environmental footprint from electricity consumption, and provide urban areas with insights into their energy sources that can catalyse renewable energy penetration for cities seeking to expand their renewable portfolio.},
doi = {10.1038/s41893-019-0271-9},
journal = {Nature Sustainability},
number = ,
volume = 2,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {4}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

The Grid: Stronger, Bigger, Smarter?: Presenting a Conceptual Framework of Power System Resilience
journal, May 2015

  • Panteli, Mathaios; Mancarella, Pierluigi
  • IEEE Power and Energy Magazine, Vol. 13, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1109/MPE.2015.2397334

US cities can manage national hydrology and biodiversity using local infrastructure policy
journal, August 2017

  • McManamay, Ryan A.; Surendran Nair, Sujithkumar; DeRolph, Christopher R.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, Issue 36
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1706201114

An Economic Geography of the United States: From Commutes to Megaregions
journal, November 2016


Climate Change, Environmental Governance and the Scale Problem: The Scale Problem
journal, February 2014


Collaborative Planning for Clean Energy Initiatives in Small to Mid-Sized Cities
journal, October 2013


Geographic variation in opinions on climate change at state and local scales in the USA
journal, April 2015

  • Howe, Peter D.; Mildenberger, Matto; Marlon, Jennifer R.
  • Nature Climate Change, Vol. 5, Issue 6
  • DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2583

Smart networked cities?
journal, June 2012

  • Tranos, Emmanouil; Gertner, Drew
  • Innovation: The European Journal of Social Science Research, Vol. 25, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1080/13511610.2012.660327

Typology of future clean energy communities: An exploratory structure, opportunities, and challenges
journal, January 2018


Locally adaptive, spatially explicit projection of US population for 2030 and 2050
journal, January 2015

  • McKee, Jacob J.; Rose, Amy N.; Bright, Edward A.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 112, Issue 5
  • DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1405713112

An Information Framework for Creating a Smart City Through Internet of Things
journal, April 2014

  • Jin, Jiong; Gubbi, Jayavardhana; Marusic, Slaven
  • IEEE Internet of Things Journal, Vol. 1, Issue 2
  • DOI: 10.1109/JIOT.2013.2296516

A Computer Movie Simulating Urban Growth in the Detroit Region
journal, June 1970


Very high resolution interpolated climate surfaces for global land areas
journal, January 2005

  • Hijmans, Robert J.; Cameron, Susan E.; Parra, Juan L.
  • International Journal of Climatology, Vol. 25, Issue 15
  • DOI: 10.1002/joc.1276

Congestion-Driven Transmission Expansion in Competitive Power Markets
journal, August 2004


The Size, Scale, and Shape of Cities
journal, February 2008


Comparing High and Low Residential Density: Life-Cycle Analysis of Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
journal, March 2006


Congestion management in competitive power market: A bibliographical survey
journal, September 2005

  • Kumar, Ashwani; Srivastava, S. C.; Singh, S. N.
  • Electric Power Systems Research, Vol. 76, Issue 1-3
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.epsr.2005.05.001

Decentralising energy: comparing the drivers and influencers of projects led by public, private, community and third sector actors
journal, October 2014


Barriers to renewable energy penetration; a framework for analysis
journal, September 2001


Multilevel governance and deployment of solar PV panels in U.S. cities
journal, June 2014


Concern or compliance? Drivers of urban decentralised energy initiatives
journal, February 2014


Complementarity and substitutability: A review of state level renewable energy policy instrument interactions
journal, January 2017