Why Closed Mines are Good Sites for Renewables, Storage and Microgrids

renewables, storage and microgrids

Closed mines may not immediately come to mind as good sites for renewables, storage and microgrids. However, through its program, Sunshine for Mines, Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), in partnership with BHP, the world’s second largest mining corporation, has found that closed mines often make excellent locations for green energy … [Read more...]

How EVs Can Support the Grid and Utilities — and Why They Don’t

EVs Can Support the Grid

Let’s count all the ways EVs can support the grid and utilities. Then let’s count all the reasons they don’t. That’s what a new report from Deloitte does. Called Powering the Future of Mobility, the report says that EVs can help stabilize the grid, absorb extra renewable energy, and help engage utility customers. To do this, however, … [Read more...]

Microgrid Kept Power On Even as the California Wildfires Caused Outages

islanded microgrid

When the islanded microgrid at Stone Edge Farm near Sonoma, Calif., kept operating for 10 days in spite of the fires that caused outages nearby, the operators seized the opportunity to learn as much as possible from the surprises they encountered. The first surprise, of course, were the fires that struck suddenly, stoked by high winds and … [Read more...]

Duke Energy’s Green Microgrids Run Smoothly through Storm

green microgrids

Two green microgrids operated by Duke Energy rode through a weakened Hurricane Irma with no hiccups, while customers experienced outages close by. The first, the Mt. Sterling solar plus  storage remote microgrid, serves a communications tower located on National Park Service property in the Great Smoky Mountains on Mt. Sterling, Haywood County, … [Read more...]

Sonnen Welcomes America to the Future with a Hometown Virtual Power Plant

residential development microgrid

Before Sonnen became involved in a new and innovative Arizona project — a clean energy hive of 2,900 homes designed to act as a virtual power plant — the German company was frustrated with the US. In fact, Blake Richetta, Sonnen senior vice president, says that his CEO used a mild expletive to describe what it’s like trying to convince … [Read more...]

California’s Grid Operator Looks at How to Absorb Excess Solar Energy with Storage

excess solar energy

A first-of-a-kind load shedding proposal from California's grid operator aims to absorb excess solar energy with storage to help solve some challenging economic and environmental problems. The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) is now developing the idea, which would allow more solar energy to make it to the grid in the middle of a … [Read more...]

Brain Research Tools Could Help Revolutionize Energy Storage Technology

energy storage technology

Duke University brain science researchers are hoping to use electronics they developed for non-invasive brain stimulation to revolutionize energy storage technology, making batteries safer, more efficient and less expensive. The idea to apply brain science technologies to battery technology came from Stefan Goetz, an assistant professor of … [Read more...]

California Gives Confused Cities a Hand in Permitting Energy Storage

permitting energy storage

California lawmakers have passed a bill that gives confused cities and towns a hand in permitting energy storage and expediting requests, as the state positions to give energy storage a large cash infusion. At the heart of the new law, AB 546, are best practices that aim to help local officials who are unfamiliar with permitting energy … [Read more...]

Stacking Energy Storage Values to Make Batteries More Profitable: Brattle Report

stacking energy storage

Stacking energy storage values -- capturing many value streams -- can lead to profitable projects, even at current storage costs, according to a new report from economists at The Brattle Group. The report, "Stacked Benefits: Comprehensively Valuing Battery Storage in California," focuses on California, but its conclusions apply generally to the … [Read more...]

Smart EV Charging Can Reduce Peak Demand: Sonoma County Study

smart EV charging

Smart EV charging in California's Sonoma County can help reduce peak demand and aid in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, says a new report,“Beyond Combustion: Electric Vehicle Trends, Goals and Recommendations for Sonoma County.” “Large numbers of EVs connected to the grid through smart charging technology offer a perfect place to … [Read more...]