Hear in-depth conversations with the world’s top energy and climate leaders from government, business, academia, and civil society.

The Big Switch

The High-Wire Act of the Distributed Grid

Matching electricity supply and demand is a high-wire balancing act. As we add more solar, wind and batteries, and shut down thermal generation, it shifts the balance. New kinds of distributed resources can help to balance things out — but they also make grid management more complex.

In our fourth episode of season 1, Dr. Melissa Lott explores the new ways to manage the zero-carbon grid.

We’ll revisit the Texas grid disaster of 2021. Why did the electricity system nearly go down for weeks or months? And could we have blunted the outages with different ways of balancing the grid?

Guests: Catherine Traywick and Elta Kolo.

The Big Switch is produced by Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy in partnership with Post Script Media. Our producers are Daniel Woldorff, Dalvin Aboagye and Stephen Lacey.  A special thanks to Kirsten Smith, Genna Morton, Artealia Juilliard and Kyu Lee.

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