Wind integration in island isolation

A mixed method research approach on facilitating the integration of additional wind energy on the Aruban electricity system through demand-side management

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The exploitation of the abundant renewable energy potential in most Small Island Developing States (SIDS) will be crucial in the near future for safeguarding their access to affordable energy, and the preservation of their eco-system. Some SIDS have already introduced renewable energy technology (RET) for exploiting primarily the available wind and solar energy. However, these islands are dealing with the intermittent nature of these renewable energy sources by only compensating the energy generation part of the electrical network. This limits the penetration level of RETs based on the flexibility of the supply side. The other option for compensating the variable output of RETs is demand side management (DSM), and even though the theory behind this subject is well documented, little attention has been given to actual SIDS cases. Therefore, this paper presents an assessment of the DSM potential in Aruba, because it is currently one of the few SIDS with a significant penetration level of RETs. This assessment relies on a mixed research method approach, based among other things on Linear Programming techniques, which can also be easily applied to other SID-cases. The results suggest that the current DSM potential for Aruba is a compensation capability of approximately 12,7-17,8 MW within 10 minutes, if only the largest consumer, i.e. the hotel sector, is involved. Furthermore, the proposed DSM program of directly shedding the air-conditioning load of the hotel sector was found technically and economically feasible although customer related barriers may hamper implementation.