“Peaking power plant” is a relatively recent term in the electricity markets for developing countries. But for some countries it has been a familiar term for a while. “Peakers” are known as the last power plants to be turned on and last to be dispatched. Peakers usually turn on when energy demand is peaking. Commonly used energy source for peaking plants is natural gas which is fossil fuel. It is important to note that these power plants supply energy only occasionally. Furthermore, peaker plants are relatively less efficient and could have more emissions per kWh of energy generated. Therefore, there are few negatives to start with. Hydropower is also a popular peaking power source. There are hydropower stations that can reach maximum generation in 16 seconds [1] Further extension of this technology is the pumped hydro power which is self-explanatory, and is indeed pumping water to a higher position during the off peak using the extra electricity generation to generate peak power later. 

   Nowadays with the emergence of energy storage and other technologies the peaking power plants have started to phase out in the developed countries. Energy storage, demand response techniques and innovative grid technologies are becoming more and more attractive. In places like Germany and California, USA these signs are prominent. Therefore, developing countries who are going to embrace peaking power plants should carefully monitor the other available technologies and related investments. As mentioned earlier, for the developing countries Peakers will still be needed since the cost of the storage is still high and the technology transfer has not yet taken place. Since there are no seasonal requirements (mainly summer air conditioning) in some parts of the developing world causes for peak are different and therefore novel technologies also need to adapt.

 Hydropower is not always viable for landlocked countries and/or small countries. There is already a significant deforestation observed across these countries because of the increasing population. Therefore, such a country would go for a natural gas power plant (or more) based on the demand. Countries like Thailand are proposing more base power plants while Indonesia has proposed large capacity (240MW) gas engines. Colombia is a hydro power giant and seems confident to rely on major hydro and coal power generation rather than focusing on Peakers. Pakistan plans to invest highly on hydro and coal while introducing renewables. Hugely populated countries like India and China are increasing their coal base while implementing even higher amount of renewables [2]. “Peakers” will play a significant role in these two countries during the next 13 years in their path parallel to 2030 agenda.

[1] http://energyeducation.ca/encyclopedia/Peaking_power

[2] https://www.smartpowergeneration.com/content-center/conference-papers/peaking-reserve-capacity-in-india-2015