Connecticut to Look at Resilience, Renewables & NWAs in Grid Modernization Proceeding

Connecticut has launched three new proceedings to explore grid modernization policies that are likely to be of interest to the microgrid community. Underway before the state Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA), the three policy tracks will look at reliability and system resilience metrics and targets, non-wires alternatives, and the … [Read more...]

Homes Gain Momentum as ‘Grid Flexibililty’ Resources

Call them nanogrids, smart homes, or something else, households are increasingly shaping up as a means to leverage grid flexibility, and energy companies are stepping forward with a range of products to advance the market. Circuit breakers, energy control platforms, batteries, aggregations, virtual power plants, non-wires alternatives and … [Read more...]

New York Grid Operator Prepares for DERs & Storage as Part of Sweeping Change

The New York Independent System Operator’s (NYISO) top priority is preparing for sweeping changes to the state’s grid, including a sharp increase in distributed energy resources (DERs) and energy storage, according to the grid operator. “New York State policies set forth the most aggressive clean energy mandates in America,” NYISO CEO … [Read more...]

California to Include Avoided Transmission Costs in DER Benefits Calculation

The California Public Utilities Commission has agreed to consider avoided transmission costs for the state’s three investor-owned utilities as part of its cost-benefit analysis for distributed energy resources (DERs). The issue centers on the PUC’s “avoided cost calculator,” or ACC, a methodology used to determine the benefits of DERs that … [Read more...]

California Utility Builds Solar Microgrid in 27 Days to Avert Wildfires in Sierra Nevadas

A solar microgrid, built in 27 days in cold and windy weather, was Southern California Edison’s (SCE) solution to an urgent need to avert wildfires near a remote dam in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Installing the microgrid in November allowed the utility to turn off a line that provided power to the site of the Gem Dam, part of the Rush … [Read more...]

Microgrids as Non-Wires Alternatives

S&C Electric's Erik Svanholm discusses the potential of microgrids as non-wires alternatives, which use distributed energy resources and microgrids to defer or replace the installation of more traditional ‘wires and poles’ infrastructure. Non-wires alternatives (NWAs) are any nontraditional investments that allow electric utilities to … [Read more...]

Texas Customers Could Save $5.47 Billion with DERs, but Regulations Must Change

Texas consumers could save $5.47 billion over ten years with distributed energy resources (DERs), but regulations must change to realize these benefits. A study by Texas Advanced Energy Business Alliance (TAEBA) identified two ways DERs can reduce costs: Act as non-wires alternatives to avoid investment in tranmission and distribution … [Read more...]

Homes to Sell Renewable Energy to Businesses in Vermont’s First of a Kind Local Energy Marketplace

The Holy Grail of local energy lies in the ability of customers to sell to one another. LO3 Energy, a leader in the quest, took a big step today with a program that lets homeowners sell renewables directly to businesses served by Vermont utility Green Mountain Power. Called Vermont Green, the pilot project also looks to solve some haunting … [Read more...]

Regulators ask Hawaiian Electric to Explain Lack of Non-Wires Alternatives in Plan

The Public Utilities Commission of Hawaii is pushing back against Hawaiian Electric Companies (HECO) proposed integrated grid plan (IGP) because it has not given sufficient consideration to non-wires alternatives. HECO may be prematurely excluding non-wires alternatives and “significantly” delaying the proposed soft launch of its IGP, the … [Read more...]

Tough Summer for the Power Grid. But the Microgrids are Working

Severe heat and storms across the US this summer have strained the electric grid and caused extensive power outages. But the microgrids are working. Consider what happened on July 20 in northeast and north central Wisconsin when a thunderstorm knocked out power to 240,000 customers, leaving 50,000 with no power for two to three days. The … [Read more...]