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THE EVOLVING GRID: How New Technologies are Making the Grid More Reliable,...

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Science Museum of Minnesota

120 W Kellogg Blvd

Argon Room

Saint Paul, MN 55102

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Minnesota faces the twin challenges of accelerating greenhouse gas emissions reductions to meet statutory 2050 goals, and the potential retirement of over 4,000 MW of existing baseload power generation in the next 20 years. Meeting these challenges will require the integration of significant amounts of new clean energy onto the electricity grid while maintaining reliable and efficient operations. The state may face planning, integration, and operational challenges as the grid undergoes this transition.

The McKnight Foundation welcomes your participation in a series of informational forums that will bring together local and national experts to learn from experiences in other states, explore the capabilities of new technologies to meet energy system needs, and discuss the challenges and opportunities of a transitioning energy system. By planning ahead, we believe that Minnesota can continue to demonstrate clean energy leadership while maintaining an energy system that meets the needs of our growing economy.

The ability of variable renewables to replace significant amounts of energy provided by central fossil resources is no longer in question. The next barrier to deep decarbonization will be ensuring that other services necessary for grid reliability are in place (voltage support, black start capability, frequency support, etc). Through conversations with technology providers, researchers, and utilities, this forum will review the capacity of distributed and other very low carbon resources to provide grid services with a focus on the Minnesota context.

AGENDA

12:30 Registration and Gather for Coffee and Light Snacks

1:00 Welcome and Setting the Context

  • Brendon Slotterback, Program Officer, McKnight Foundation

1:10 Framing: Grid Service Requirements and Emerging Solutions

  • Dan Cross-Call, Manager, Rocky Mountain Institute

1:35 Panel #1: Supply-Side Solutions for Grid Services

  • Eran Mahrer, Senior Director Utilities, First Solar
  • Mark Ahlstrom, Vice President Renewable Energy Policy, NextEra Energy Resources and President, UVIG Board of Directors
  • Alice Jackson, Vice President, Xcel Energy

2:35 Break

2:50 Panel #2: Demand-Side Solutions for Grid Services

  • Eric Toler, CFO & EVP of Corporate Development, Enbala Power Networks
  • Gary Connett, Director, Member Services, Great River Energy
  • Sam Shrank, Solutions Lead, Tendril

3:50 Small Group Discussion and Report Back

4:20 Wrap-Up and Next Steps

  • Brendon Slotterback, McKnight Foundation

4:30 Adjourn

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Date and Time

Location

Science Museum of Minnesota

120 W Kellogg Blvd

Argon Room

Saint Paul, MN 55102

View Map

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