Climate Analytics to Support Natural Gas Sector Utilities: Actionable, Responsive and Open Solutions for Historical Climate Needs in California

Develops a platform serving weather-related data to support natural gas sector resiliency, including continuously updated weather observations, remote sensing, and reanalysis data based on advanced statistical techniques.

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Tech Partner

Eagle Rock Analytics

Recipient

Sacramento, CA

Recipient Location

6th

Senate District

7th

Assembly District

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$221,119

Amount Spent

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Active

Project Status

Project Update

The research team worked with CEC staff on strategies for engaging key stakeholders, including CPUC staff involved with long-term gas planning rulemaking. The team is continuing to coordinate with and leverage the architecture of a data platform being developed under EPIC-funded grant EPC-20-007. Work continues along the two main project focuses: (1) Assessing climate implications for reliability planning for fossil gas; and (2) Producing hourly quality-controlled versions of hourly weather data. As of July 2022, for Focus 1, the project team organized, facilitated, and analyzed working group discussions with gas and other energy industry stakeholders toward understanding and serving their specific weather-data needs and concerns. For Focus 2, the project team has produced a series of quality-controlled weather data sets including those required by related EPIC grants, developed protocols for Quality Assurance/Quality Control and data formatting, identified best practices and metadata standards, and analyzed available hourly data by variable and data source. Converting quality assurance and control processes to be fully cloud-based is underway. This project supports research efforts under California's Fifth Climate Change Assessment.

The Issue

Natural gas IOUs have expressed a need for continuously updated, quality-controlled, fine resolution climate data. Risks from concurrent or sequential climate events (i.e. landslides in areas impacted by wildfire followed by extreme precipitation) are poorly understood and represent a major risk to natural gas system infrastructure. Historical climate data and climate related geohazards are not sufficiently resolved to elucidate critical dynamics between the natural gas system and climate. Improvements in historical climate data as well as its availability are necessary to allow for climate resilience and adaption planning to inform planning for the natural gas system.

Project Innovation

Recipient will produce a data assimilation platform that serves as a central location for weather-related data of interest to natural gas stakeholders. The platform will provide continuously updated weather observations, remote sensing, and reanalysis data that support natural gas sector adaptation and resiliency. This data assimilation platform will be extended to generate value-added data products, such as risk from landslides triggered by extreme precipitation in areas severely impacted by wildfire. These value-added products will provide insights into climate-natural gas system dynamics. The data assimilation platform will enable data produced by other CEC-funded research to be made available quickly, with lower costs to ratepayers. The project will use machine learning and advanced statistical techniques using open source software to bring big-data, intelligent computing techniques to climate resilience planning problems in the natural gas system.

Project Benefits

Agreement will build a data assimilation platform that will provide high-resolution historical climate data of relevance to natural gas adaptation. The platform will be designed to enable technological advances beyond the Agreement period, as transfer of platform to CEC will facilitate use after the project is complete. Sustained outreach throughout the Agreement will help overcome barriers associated with a lack of representation in achieving statutory energy goals and in informing future policies. This applied research project will produce data outputs designed to inform engineering decisions and lead to actionable climate resilience outcomes. Informed deployment of infrastructure will increase energy reliability through reductions of damage and decrease societal costs through provision of a central, quality-controlled data resource.

Lower Costs

Affordability

The design and implementation of this work will ensure that historical climate data of relevance to natural gas sector planning can be continuously updated and maintained at a low cost to ratepayers.

Key Project Members

Project Member

Owen Doherty

Eagle Rock Analytics

Contact the Team

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