This project will develop new methods to mitigate adverse human health impacts from power sector emissions through the targeted use of grid-connected energy storage. Energy storage devices, such as batteries or pumped storage hydropower, can shift both the time and location of power sector emissions based on their charging and discharging strategies. The overall human health impacts of criteria pollutants such as sulfur dioxide (SO2) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx) are closely related to the both temporal and spatial distribution of emissions. The overarching research question that will be addressed is: Can operational strategies for grid-connected energy storage yield cost-effective reductions in the human health impacts associated with power sector emissions?
To answer this question, the research team will develop a unit commitment and economic dispatch model with energy storage to determine optimal power system operations and provide unit-level SO2 and NOx emissions. A state-of-the-science air pollution chemical transport model and sensitivity analysis technique will be used to provide spatially- and temporally-resolved PM2.5 and O3 concentrations stemming from power plant and energy storage dispatch decisions. Human health damage cost estimates will determine the health response from changes in exposure to these secondary pollutants, coupling those results with the value of a statistical life and determine the unit-level marginal health damage costs associated with the primary emissions. Those costs then serve as inputs into the power system model to allow real-time decision making, effectively internalizing the externality costs of the emissions and yielding the optimal charge/discharge behavior of the energy storage to cost-effectively reduce human health impacts.
This award reflects NSF’s statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation’s intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.