Wind Buffets Energy Landscape 替代能源競爭天然氣發電受挑戰

 

精英翻譯社轉自: https://paper.udn.com/udnpaper/POH0067/326935/web/

 

文/Ivan Penn

譯/李京倫

 

As environmental concerns drive power companies away from using coal, natural gas has emerged as the nation’s No. 1 power source. Plentiful and relatively inexpensive as a result of the nation’s fracking boom, it has been portrayed as a bridge to an era in which alternative energy would take primacy.

環保顧慮驅使美國電力公司放棄燃煤,天然氣已成為美國頭號發電能源。由於美國湧現開採頁岩油氣的熱潮,天然氣變得產量豐富且相對便宜,被描繪成一座橋梁,能通往替代能源主導的新時代。

 

But technology and economics have carved a different, shorter pathway that has bypassed the broad need for some fossil-fuel plants. And that has put proponents of natural gas on the defensive.

不過,科技進步和經濟效益考量已另闢捷徑,繞過對一些化石燃料電廠的廣大需求,使天然氣擁護者處於守勢。

 

Some utility companies have scrapped plans for new natural-gas plants in favor of wind and solar sources that have become cheaper and easier to install. Existing gas plants are being shut because their economics are no longer attractive. And regulators are increasingly challenging the plans of companies determined to move forward with new natural-gas plants.

一些電力公司已撤銷新建天然氣電廠的計畫,轉而發展成本已降低,設置也更容易的風力和太陽能。現存天然氣電廠因為經濟效益不再具有吸引力,正逐一關閉。此外,政府管理當局也日益質疑電力公司新建天然氣電廠的決定。

 

“It’s a very different world that we’re arriving at very quickly,” said Robert McCullough, an energy consultant in Portland, Oregon. “That wind farm can literally be put on a train and brought online within a year. It is moving so fast that even critics of the old path like myself have been taken by surprise.”

俄勒岡州波特蘭市能源顧問麥卡洛說:「我們即將面對一個大不相同的世界。風力發電場真的可以放在列車上,並在一年內上線運轉。科技發展得這麼快,就連我這種批評老式發電方式的人都嚇了一跳。」

 

The shifting dynamics are being seen in the Western states in particular — driven not only by economics, but by regulation and climate as well.

這種轉變的勢頭在美國西部各州尤其明顯,原因不只是經濟效益,還有政策規範和氣候。

 

The Arizona Corporation Commission, which regulates the state’s investor-owned utilities, recently refused to endorse plans by three power companies that included more natural-gas facilities. Commissioners directed them to make greater use of energy storage and plants that produce zero emissions.

亞利桑納州民營公用事業委員會主管該州投資者擁有的公用事業,最近拒核准三家電力公司包括增設天然氣發電設施在內的計畫。委員指示這些公司多利用儲能技術和零排碳電廠。

 

Nationwide, utility executives, power producers and federal regulators have also argued that a healthy power grid requires consistent power, even when the sun doesn’t shine or the wind ceases to blow. The more solar and wind power that is added to the electric grid, they say, the greater the need for reliable backup sources like natural gas.

在美國全國層面,電力事業負責人、電廠和聯邦管理單位也都主張,健全的電網需要持續不斷的電力,甚至在太陽沒露臉或風停時亦然。他們表示,輸入供電網的太陽能和風能電力越多,就越需要像天然氣一樣可靠的備用能源。

 

“Gas has got to be part of that equation,” Robert F. Powelson, a commissioner on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, recently told an energy conference. “The gas system has gotten extremely reliable.”

聯邦能源管理委員會委員鮑爾森最近在一場能源會議上說:「天然氣必須是發電等式的一部分,天然氣系統已經變得極為可靠。」

 

Natural gas isn’t likely to be unseated as the country’s primary source of electricity generation anytime soon. In fact, utility companies plan to add more natural-gas plants than any other source, including all alternative energy sources, like solar, wind and hydropower, combined.

天然氣不太可能在近期內失去美國最重要發電能源的地位。事實上,電力公司打算增建的天然氣電廠,比其他任何一種能源電廠(包括所有替代能源如太陽能、風力、水力電廠的總和)都多。

創作者介紹
創作者 ests24331677 的頭像
ests24331677

【精英翻譯】的部落格

ests24331677 發表在 痞客邦 留言(0) 人氣()