There’s a fundamental dichotomy in U.S. energy infrastructure. Power is mostly produced from resources inland, but most of the consumption is in the major population centers along the east and west coasts. Thus, we have a spiderweb of transmission and distribution (T&D) systems to get power from where it’s generated to where it’s consumed. As those load centers increasingly demand more energy, significant investments in transmission infrastructure are needed – but building out addition transmission creates congestion at the load centers, according to experts. Creating enough T&D to satisfy peak demand and avoid congestion would be like building a 32-lane highway to combat rush-hour traffic: for two hours a day it would be well used but the other 22 hours it would be overkill. And utilities dislike underutilized investments.
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