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This content will become publicly available on October 9, 2024

Title: Residential precooling on a high-solar grid: impacts on CO 2 emissions, peak period demand, and electricity costs across California

As regional grids increase penetrations of variable renewable electricity (VRE) sources, demand-side management (DSM) presents an opportunity to reduce electricity-related emissions by shifting consumption patterns in a way that leverages the large diurnal fluctuations in the emissions intensity of the electricity fleet. Here we explore residential precooling, a type of DSM designed to shift the timing of air-conditioning (AC) loads from high-demand periods to periods earlier in the day, as a strategy to reduce peak period demand, CO2emissions, and residential electricity costs in the grid operated by the California Independent System Operator (CAISO). CAISO provides an interesting case study because it generally has high solar generation during the day that is replaced by fast-ramping natural gas generators when it drops off suddenly in the early evening. Hence, CAISO moves from a fleet of generators that are primarily clean and cheap to a generation fleet that is disproportionately emissions-intensive and expensive over a short period of time, creating an attractive opportunity for precooling. We use EnergyPlus to simulate 480 distinct precooling schedules for four single-family homes across California’s 16 building climate zones. We find that precooling a house during summer months in the climate zone characterizing Downtown Los Angeles can reduce peak period electricity consumption by 1–4 kWh d−1and cooling-related CO2emissions by as much as 0.3 kg CO2 d−1depending on single-family home design. We report results across climate zone and single-family home design and show that precooling can be used to achieve simultaneous reductions in emissions, residential electricity costs, and peak period electricity consumption for a variety of single-family homes and locations across California.

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IOP Publishing
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Environmental Research: Energy
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Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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