Why and How to Bring Microgrids to Small Town America

This spring, the Poudre Valley Electric Association (PVREA), which provides power to northern Colorado, plans to test a microgrid for a small town that has experienced outages because of car accidents on curvy roads, extreme weather, and, in September, a fire that left the town without power for 52 hours. The microgrid, which will replace … [Read more...]

Puget Sound Energy Looks to Invest Heavily in DERs

Amid plans to shed about 750 MW of coal-fired generation, Puget Sound Energy (PSE) is preparing to invest heavily in distributed energy resources (DERs), including non-wires alternatives and possibly microgrids, according to a draft integrated resource plan (IRP). “Distributed energy resources, such as battery energy storage and rooftop as … [Read more...]

Microgrid at Australian Equestrian Center Helps Town Hit by Bush Fires

When bush fires swept the south coast of New South Wales in Australia last year, an equestrian center showed why it's good to have a neighbor with a microgrid. Willinga Park, an equestrian property that spans 2,000 acres on two national parks, became a safe haven for local residents’ cattle and horses in December, and its islanded microgrid … [Read more...]

California Regulators to Tackle Payment for DERs Acting as Non-Wires Alternatives

California is on a cutting edge quest to find ways to accurately value decentralized energy, as evidenced last month in its microgrid tariff decision, and this week as it takes up a proposal on using distributed energy as non-wires alternatives. The California Public Utilities Commission is slated Thursday to consider two pilot programs that … [Read more...]

Built With Frugal Innovation, Solar Microgrids Improve Medical Care in the Himalayas

In remote villages in the Himalayas, medical centers often lack critical medical equipment, refrigerators for vaccines and dependable electricity for light and other essentials. But Paras Loomba intends to change that, bringing solar microgrids to medical centers, which will allow for vaccine storage, baby warmers, ventilators and other items that … [Read more...]

Wisconsin Utility Proposes Microgrid Resiliency Program with up to 22 Projects

In response to customer demand for increased resiliency, Xcel Energy’s Wisconsin utility is proposing a microgrid pilot program that could include 22 projects. Northern States Power’s Resiliency Service Pilot would be capped at 30 MW, with a third of the capacity dedicated to governmental and nonprofit entities, according to a Dec. 9 filing … [Read more...]

97% Renewable Microgrid to Replace Fire-Vulnerable Line in California During Wildfire Season

A 97% renewable microgrid will allow Liberty Utilities to de-energize four miles of transmission line located in a remote Sierra Nevada location during wildfire season in California. The microgrid, from BoxPower and owned by Liberty Utilities, a regulated utility with about 50,000 customers on the West side of Lake Tahoe, is made up of 20 kW … [Read more...]

Distributed Energy Scores Big Win in US Wholesale Markets with FERC Order 2222

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on Thursday issued Order 2222, its much anticipated ruling that paves the way for aggregated distributed energy resources (DERs) to compete alongside traditional power plants and other grid resources in wholesale markets. The landmark ruling was heralded in a commission news release as … [Read more...]

Pepco Considers Non-Wires Alternatives, Issues RFI

Pepco is seeking information on possible non-wires alternatives, such as distributed energy resources, to meet a looming constraint on its distribution system in Washington, DC. The request for information (RFI) grew out of the PowerPath DC grid modernization effort launched by the district’s utility commission in January. PowerPath DC … [Read more...]

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...]