How much will the eclipse affect solar power?

Approaching eclipse sheds light on US solar energy expansion.


With a total solar eclipse set to traverse the US on Monday, several outlets have looked at the impact it could have on solar power through the day.



“In California, the grid operator is lining up additional supply from natural gas power plants and hydroelectric dams to accommodate the drop,” says the FT.

The contingency plans reflect the expansion of solar energy in the US since the last eclipse in 1979. “The rise has been especially dramatic in California, which seeks to get half its power from renewable sources in 2030 in a bid to cut greenhouse gas emissions.”

The California grid operator said it would have to fill a gap of 6,000MW as people turn on the lights during the day — enough power for 6m homes.

Bloomberg runs through some key questions, such as “How much will the eclipse affect solar power?”(“Enough to notice”) and “Might there be service disruptions?” (“That’s highly unlikely”). And Wired takes a closer look at how California’s grid will react to the eclipse.

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