Why It’s Hard to Create a Network of Community Microgrids in California

community microgrids

Clean Coalition is on a mission to alter transmission access charges that the organization says unfairly boost the cost of local renewable energy and community microgrids in California. Eliminating the charges for locally produced renewables would lower the cost of renewable energy and microgrids, paving the way for more of both, says Craig … [Read more...]

Solarcentury, Canadian Solar, Caterpillar and Tesla Energize 40,000 Off-Grid African Households and Businesses

Solarcentury

Developers and technology companies worldwide continue to focus on electrifying energy-poor areas of Africa. Recent example: 40,000 residents and businesses in the northeast African country of Eritrea now have reliable electricity thanks to two new minigrids. Developed by UK-based Solarcentury, the minigrids (Africa's term for microgrids) … [Read more...]

Legislation Would Give Energy Storage the Same US Tax Benefits as Solar

legislation

If energy storage advocates have their way, storage will receive the same US tax benefits as does solar — an investment tax credit for new installations. Legislation to do just that was introduced in the House of Representatives late last week. Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Pa., would create a separate energy storage infrastructure investment tax … [Read more...]

What Will it Take to Boost Microgrid Markets to the Next Level?

microgrid markets

Moving the microgrid market is an ambitious goal that will require policy changes, technology advances and a customer-centric approach, say several microgrid industry leaders recently interviewed by Microgrid Knowledge. Overall, this challenging effort delivers big benefits, they say. “It’s an exciting time to be in this industry,” says … [Read more...]

How Massachusetts Compensates Battery Storage Owners for Energy Efficiency: Report

energy efficiency

When most people think of energy efficiency, they think of using fewer electrons. But the Clean Energy Group has an expanded definition — to shift energy usage from high peaks to low demand times. And it says that battery storage is the important new technology to allow this. The Clean Energy Group, supported by the Barr Foundation and the … [Read more...]

Goodbye to Arguments Against Renewables? New Studies Find them as Reliable and Cheap as Fossils

energy-as-a-service

Can renewables cost less than fossil fuel generation? And are they as reliable? It appears so, especially when they are coupled with a suite of distributed energy resources (DERs), such as virtual power plants and demand response. New reports by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology and the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) lay out the … [Read more...]

Economics is Driving the Growth of Distributed Energy Resources in Texas

distributed energy

Texas was among those states in the 1990s to restructure its retail electricity market, which gave business and residential consumers the option to choose a power supplier. Today, that type of innovation is expanding to give those users more dynamic options — the ability to generate their own electricity with distributed energy. The Texas … [Read more...]

Navigant Research is Bullish on Utility-Scale Storage Market

utility-scale storage

Over the last seven years, the utility-scale storage market has gotten revved up. That’s because the technology risks and the cost associated with those devices have fallen dramatically, all compounded by an increasing number of developers that are participating in the market. The end result is that solar-plus-storage is competing head on … [Read more...]

New AC-DC Mobile Microgrid Holds Promise of More Efficient Power Distribution

mobile microgrids

A team at the University of Calgary plans to build a mobile microgrid that promises to improve the simultaneous distribution and management of both alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC) electricity. Three university professors are leveraging proprietary AC-DC power conversion and energy management technology to build and operate a … [Read more...]

How Batteries are Challenging Coal and Gas on Cost: BNEF

BESS

The refrain that lithium-ion batteries are a good idea, but just too expensive, is beginning to ring hollow in some markets, according to new data from BloombergNEF (BNEF). In fact, batteries are experiencing what BNEF describes as a “spectacular” drop in per megawatt-hour costs — 76 percent since 2012. The research company this week … [Read more...]