What FERC Order 2222-A Means for Microgrids and Energy Democracy

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Order No. 2222-A, released March 18, continues efforts by US regulators to remove barriers for aggregated distributed energy resources (DERs) in wholesale markets. And it may unlock new revenue streams for microgrids. That’s the word from Norman Bay, former chairman of FERC, who called the order … [Read more...]

California Pays DERs Too Little in Attempt to Curb Blackouts

A decision from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) that aims to reduce the potential for blackouts because of hot weather this summer falls short for distributed energy resources (DERs) in California, industry members said. The ruling, "Decision Directing Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Southern California Edison Company … [Read more...]

How Behind the Meter Assets Can Help — or Hinder — Utility Energy Management in Texas

More and more, utilities are deploying behind the meter (BTM) assets — particularly energy storage and electric vehicles (EV) — to reduce their loads, balance their systems and provide resilience. In the wake of a February  outage, Portland General Electric said it has been testing projects that deploy customer sited storage to help boost … [Read more...]

Not Only Texas Went Dark in February: After Storm, Portland, Oregon Tests Resiliency Partnerships

Texas captured worldwide attention in February when a devastating storm crippled the state's power system. But at about the same time, and to much less fanfare, part of the Northwest struggled with similar issues. Portland, Oregon, experienced power outages because of severe weather that left about 200,000 customers in the dark, some for several … [Read more...]

Locals and Techies Promote Intriguing Critical Services Microgrid for Asheville, NC

What do you get when you bring together an energy consultant, an aerospace engineer, a former engineering professor and a cybersecurity expert — all of them in Asheville, North Carolina, a city renowned for its creative spirit. It turns out you get a microgrid proposal -- and an intriguing one at that. The group of volunteers is pitching … [Read more...]

California Microgrid To Demonstrate that Hospitals Don’t Need Diesel Generators

Kaiser Permanente plans to demonstrate a range of energy innovations at a hospital microgrid in Ontario, California, that will include how to incorporate renewable energy and move away from diesel generators. The hospital microgrid also will feature a fuel cell and a demonstration virtual power plant (VPP) — with power provided from … [Read more...]

Swell Energy Pairs with Hawaiian Electric to Create Virtual Power Plant

Hawaii's Public Utilities Commission approved a $25 million contract with Swell Energy to deliver a virtual power plant for Hawaiian Electric customers on three islands.    Swell Energy, a California-based smart grid solutions provider, will install behind-the-meter, solar-powered home batteries to approximately 6,000 residential customers … [Read more...]

Energy Industry Players Moving out of their Swim Lanes

New business models — such as utility use of mobile batteries for peak demand — are now emerging, along with new and needed distributed energy resource (DER) integration models, according to two new reports from Deloitte. Markets aren’t providing enough compensation for distributed energy resources (DER) which is blocking their expansion on the … [Read more...]

As It Plans World’s Biggest Virtual Power Plant, OhmConnect Warns of Market Flaws in California

OhmConnect, partnering with Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners, plans a 550-MW virtual power plant (VPP), Resi-Station, created by pooling and controlling homeowners’ devices and microgrids to provide clean power for California via aggregated flexible demand. Said to be the biggest project of its kind in the world, Resi-Station will help meet … [Read more...]

Nova Scotia Power Picks Sunverge for Virtual Power Plant

Nova Scotia Power has selected Sunverge to provide the technology for a residential virtual power plant that is part of the Smart Grid Atlantic pilot project. The project is a four-year research and demonstration program, with funding from the Canadian government, to determine how emerging energy technologies can best benefit customers, … [Read more...]