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Energy and hydrology modelling of hydropower in Eastern Canada

Ljungberg, Mimmi LU (2015) VVR820 20142
Division of Water Resources Engineering
Abstract
Canada is plentiful in resources and the fourth largest producer of hydropower in the world. The province of Quebec stands for about 52% of Canada’s total hydropower production, and the Quebecois energy market is totally dominated by hydropower: 96% of the electricity produced in Quebec is hydro. In hydro dominated deregulated energy markets, a correlation can often be found between the water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs, i.e. the potentially available energy, and the price of electricity. Predictions on how the water inflow will vary are thus attractive information for many actors in the energy market. This master thesis, conducted as degree project at the program in environmental engineering at Lund University, was made in... (More)
Canada is plentiful in resources and the fourth largest producer of hydropower in the world. The province of Quebec stands for about 52% of Canada’s total hydropower production, and the Quebecois energy market is totally dominated by hydropower: 96% of the electricity produced in Quebec is hydro. In hydro dominated deregulated energy markets, a correlation can often be found between the water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs, i.e. the potentially available energy, and the price of electricity. Predictions on how the water inflow will vary are thus attractive information for many actors in the energy market. This master thesis, conducted as degree project at the program in environmental engineering at Lund University, was made in collaboration with the company Thomson Reuters. In the study it is investigated whether the conditions in eastern Canada qualifies to be applied to the Scania-HBV model, with the purpose to produce forecasts of the energy inflow to the hydropower system. A literature study is performed and models for the hydropower complexes Churchill Falls in Newfoundland and Labrador and La Grande Rivière in Quebec are constructed. From the literature study, it is concluded that the energy market in Quebec is regulated and that the electricity price thus is fixed and indifferent to external influences. The export to the deregulated US markets are however of significant importance, and in this context the energy inflow progno- ses might be of interest. In order to construct Scania-HBV models it is of utmost importance to have reliable and extensively available data. As a rule, such data are unfortunately seldom obtainable, and this was also the case concerning the modelling of eastern Canada. However, based on the available data, the models are evaluated as reasonable, and the modelled results as very good. For further studies and model constructions it is recommended to try and find data on the hydropower reservoir capacities and how the reservoirs are regulated. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
Kanada är väldigt rikt på energiresurser och fjärde största vattenkraftproducenten i världen. Provinsen Quebec står för omkring 52% av Kanadas totala vattenkraftsproduktion, och ener- gimarknaden Quebec domineras fullständigt av vattenkraft: 96% av elen genereras där av vattenkraft. I avreglerade vattenkraftdominerade energimarknader är det vanligt att det finns ett samband mellan vatteninflödet till kraftverksreservoarerna, dvs mellan den potentiellt tillgängliga energin, och elpriset. Förutsägelser om hur vatteninflödet kommer att variera är där- med hett åtråvärd information för många aktörer på elmarknaderna. Denna mastersuppsats, som genomförts som examination på civilingenjörsprogrammet i ekosystemteknik på Lunds tekniska högskola... (More)
Kanada är väldigt rikt på energiresurser och fjärde största vattenkraftproducenten i världen. Provinsen Quebec står för omkring 52% av Kanadas totala vattenkraftsproduktion, och ener- gimarknaden Quebec domineras fullständigt av vattenkraft: 96% av elen genereras där av vattenkraft. I avreglerade vattenkraftdominerade energimarknader är det vanligt att det finns ett samband mellan vatteninflödet till kraftverksreservoarerna, dvs mellan den potentiellt tillgängliga energin, och elpriset. Förutsägelser om hur vatteninflödet kommer att variera är där- med hett åtråvärd information för många aktörer på elmarknaderna. Denna mastersuppsats, som genomförts som examination på civilingenjörsprogrammet i ekosystemteknik på Lunds tekniska högskola och i samarbete med företaget Thomson Reuters, utreder förutsättningarna för att upprätta Scania-HBV-modeller för områdena i östra Kanada, i syfte att producera pro- gnoser på energiinflödet till vattenkraftssystemen. En litteraturstudie om den kanadensiska elmarknaden utförs och modeller för vattenkraftskomplexen Churchill Falls i Newfoundland och Labrador och La Grande Rivière i Quebec upprättas. Av litteraturstudien framkommer att elmarknaden i Quebec fortfarande är reglerad och att elpriset därmed ligger fast och utan synlig påverkan från yttre faktorer. Dock förekommer en betydande export till de öppna markna- derna i USA, och i denna kontext kan inflödesprognoser vara intressanta. För upprättandet av Scania-HBV-modeller är det av yttersta vikt att ha utförlig tillgång till tillförlitliga data. Som regel är dessa data dessvärre svåråtkomliga, och så var även fallet i modellerandet av östra Kanada. Baserat på de data som fanns tillgängliga, bedöms dock modellerna som rimliga och modellresultaten som mycket goda. För fortsatta studier och modellkonstruktioner rekom- menderas att försöka finna data för hur stor kapacitet som ryms i kraftverksreservoarerna och hur dessa regleras. (Less)
Popular Abstract
Hydrological modelling as market analysis tool – do the conditions in Quebec qualify for RRM-forecasting?

In deregulated and hydropower dominated energy markets, a correlation can often be distinguished between the water available for hydropower generation and the spot price of electricity. Predictions on how the water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs will vary are hence attractive information for many actors in the energy market. These types of forecasts can be made for a specific region with rainfall-runoff models (RRM). Due to the enormous hydropower production in eastern Canada, Scania-HBV models were constructed for two hydropower complexes in the region, and the results of the simulations were analysed in the context of the... (More)
Hydrological modelling as market analysis tool – do the conditions in Quebec qualify for RRM-forecasting?

In deregulated and hydropower dominated energy markets, a correlation can often be distinguished between the water available for hydropower generation and the spot price of electricity. Predictions on how the water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs will vary are hence attractive information for many actors in the energy market. These types of forecasts can be made for a specific region with rainfall-runoff models (RRM). Due to the enormous hydropower production in eastern Canada, Scania-HBV models were constructed for two hydropower complexes in the region, and the results of the simulations were analysed in the context of the Quebecois energy market.

Canada is ranked as fourth largest producer of hydropower in the world. More than half of the Canadian hydropower is generated in the eastern province Quebec, making this an interesting region for hydropower forecasting. In collaboration with the international company Thomson Reuters, the Quebecois hydropower system was investigated and Scania-HBV models constructed for selected regions in the area.

The Scania-HBV model is a rainfall-runoff model developed by the hydrological department at Thomson Reuters, built to represent the natural catchment upstream the hydropower reservoir. The construction is based on the continuity equation, which states that the change in storage equals the difference between the inflows and outflows to and from the system. By providing the model with meteorological input data from a specific catchment area, the outflow from the region can be simulated. The incoming water is transformed into discharge by algorithms representing the water transport mechanisms through the snowpack (if there is any), soil layer and groundwater zones. The outflow from the model represents the natural water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs, or, in other words, how much electricity that can be generated by that particular hydropower system. The model is applied to a specific area by calibration of the parameters in the model algorithms.

Canada’s largest hydropower plant, Robert-Bourassa, is located in the drainage basin of La Grande Rivière in the north-western corner of Quebec. The gigantic hydropower plant has a constructed spillway three times higher than the Niagara Falls, and an installed capacity more than six times larger than that of Sweden’s largest hydropower plant. Robert-Bourassa was commissioned first in line in La Grande system, a hydropower complex that today constitutes eleven hydropower plants with a total installed capacity of 17 GW, almost half of the total hydropower system in Quebec.

About 800 km east of Robert-Bourassa, across the border to the neighbouring province Newfoundland and Labrador, Churchill River flows from the Labrador plateau towards the Atlantic Ocean. The Montagnais-Naskapi Indians believed that merely looking at the 75 m drop of Churchill Falls meant death – today the water spins the turbines of Canada’s second largest hydropower plant. 2

Models were constructed for each of the regions La Grande and Churchill Falls and quantitative evaluation indicated that both models were well calibrated to their respective hydropower systems.The inflow simulations from the Scania-HBV models are used by Thomson Reuters to predict the variations in the electricity spot price. Although the electricity prices in Quebec are regulated and thus indifferent to the market fluctuations, the electricity trading between Quebec and the deregulated US markets is of great importance in the whole region. In this context, the Scania-HBV simulations can become a useful tool.

The procedure with constructing the rainfall-runoff models for La Grande and Churchill Falls is described in detail in the master thesis Energy and hydrology modelling of hydropower in Eastern Canada by Mimmi Ljungberg. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Ljungberg, Mimmi LU
supervisor
organization
course
VVR820 20142
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Rainfall runoff model, hydropower, Eastern Canada, electricity market
report number
TVVR 15/5001
ISSN
1101-9824
language
English
id
5425727
date added to LUP
2015-05-21 15:47:16
date last changed
2015-05-21 15:47:16
@misc{5425727,
  abstract     = {Canada is plentiful in resources and the fourth largest producer of hydropower in the world. The province of Quebec stands for about 52% of Canada’s total hydropower production, and the Quebecois energy market is totally dominated by hydropower: 96% of the electricity produced in Quebec is hydro. In hydro dominated deregulated energy markets, a correlation can often be found between the water inflow to the hydropower reservoirs, i.e. the potentially available energy, and the price of electricity. Predictions on how the water inflow will vary are thus attractive information for many actors in the energy market. This master thesis, conducted as degree project at the program in environmental engineering at Lund University, was made in collaboration with the company Thomson Reuters. In the study it is investigated whether the conditions in eastern Canada qualifies to be applied to the Scania-HBV model, with the purpose to produce forecasts of the energy inflow to the hydropower system. A literature study is performed and models for the hydropower complexes Churchill Falls in Newfoundland and Labrador and La Grande Rivière in Quebec are constructed. From the literature study, it is concluded that the energy market in Quebec is regulated and that the electricity price thus is fixed and indifferent to external influences. The export to the deregulated US markets are however of significant importance, and in this context the energy inflow progno- ses might be of interest. In order to construct Scania-HBV models it is of utmost importance to have reliable and extensively available data. As a rule, such data are unfortunately seldom obtainable, and this was also the case concerning the modelling of eastern Canada. However, based on the available data, the models are evaluated as reasonable, and the modelled results as very good. For further studies and model constructions it is recommended to try and find data on the hydropower reservoir capacities and how the reservoirs are regulated.},
  author       = {Ljungberg, Mimmi},
  issn         = {1101-9824},
  keyword      = {Rainfall runoff model,hydropower,Eastern Canada,electricity market},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Energy and hydrology modelling of hydropower in Eastern Canada},
  year         = {2015},
}