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DOE seeking public input regarding “energysheds”

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a request for information (RFI) (DE-FOA-0002548) regarding the concept of an “energyshed” and energyshed management systems. Given that the term “energyshed” is relatively new, DOE is seeking feedback on its concept and definition, as well as its application to the electric grid.

One piece of literature defines “energyshed” as “that geographical area in which all power consumed within it is supplied within it” and an “energyshed management system” to be whatever tool or process oversees the grid operations within the geographical bounds of the energyshed.


Energysheds for 20 selected US cities in 2010. Plant–city connections are depicted as straight lines from plants that supply electricity to block group centroids that consume it. From: DeRolph et al.

DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) is seeking input on:

  • Concept and Definition: Additional or alternate energyshed definitions; benefits and drawbacks.

  • Tools and Analyses: Tools, data, and analyses required to effectively operate and manage energysheds.

  • Planning and Operations: Considerations regarding grid planning and potential changes or barriers to power system operations.

  • Resilience: Opportunities and barriers to developing a more resilient power system.

  • Energy Justice, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Strategies to ensure EERE prioritizes the energy needs of underserved communities located within an energyshed.

  • Other Information: Additional information DOE should consider on the topic of energysheds or energyshed management systems.

Energysheds are analogous to watersheds, in which communities use more locally derived water to improve efficiency and decrease their dependence on water transported from long distances. The energyshed concept encourages communities to consider where their energy comes from geographically as well as the resources used to generate it.

Information provided in response to this RFI will inform DOE’s consideration of a potential funding opportunity to develop and deploy an energyshed management system.

DOE is accepting comments on this RFI through than 5:00pm (ET) on 10 August 2021.

EERE is organizing a workshop on 13 - 14 July 2021 to obtain feedback on the concept of an energyshed and energyshed management system.


  • DeRolph, C.R., McManamay, R.A., Morton, A.M. et al. (2019) “City energysheds and renewable energy in the United States.” Nat Sustain 2, 412–420 doi: 10.1038/s41893-019-0271-9



Seems kind of culturally-focussed rather than technically- or logistically-focussed. We have a bit too many Bleeding-Heart-Liberal-driven infrastructure initiatives as it is at the moment that will be unlikely to deliver efficiency, value, scale, and technological robustness. Keep the Woke in the applicable community and allow the competence and vision to come first.


not a good comment

Albert E Short

Rather than bewail the terror of woke-ism, I'll go back to a paleo-con talking point: This is a wrong-headed demand side approach rather than a clearly superior supply side approach. To start I will assert that grid-storage is a far lighter technical lift than (e.g.) SMRs. An HVDC scaffold buffered with a ample storage, fueled by very cheap solar from the Southwest deserts and the Texas-to-North Dakota wind corridor (less appealingly known as "Tornado Alley"), and buried along the sides of the Interstates is IMHO the more obvious choice.

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