This study uses a renewable energy zone methodology to identify high-value long-distance transmission corridors for delivering low-cost clean energy to major load centers. The study focuses on interregional solutions, where the renewable energy zone is in one transmission planning region and the destination load is in another. A series of geospatial optimizations are used to identify zones where very large amounts of wind and solar can be developed at a very low levelized energy cost. The nation's largest load centers are then matched with the renewable energy zone that minimizes the cost of interregional transmission and the cost of delivered clean energy. We then analyze each zone-to-load corridor for its potential savings in energy cost, and whether the annual savings is more or less than the annual revenue requirement of the transmission needed to move clean energy from the renewable energy zone to load. We also compare the resource adequacy value of wind and solar in the interregional renewable energy zone with the resource adequacy value of local wind and solar resources.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages73
StatePublished - 2024

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A20-88228


  • IREZ
  • National Transmission Planning Study
  • NTP
  • planning
  • solar
  • transmission
  • wind


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