What is a Virtual Power Plant?

virtual power plant

A virtual power plant turns on its head the traditional idea of relying on big, centralized power plants for predictable power. But what is it exactly? And who uses virtual power plants and why?   A virtual power plant works remotely to combine a number of independent energy resources from disparate locations into a network that provides … [Read more...]

What’s Driving Microgrids toward a $30.9B Market?

microgrid market

A forecast issued this week by Navigant Research identifies several new trends emerging in the global microgrid market as it moves toward becoming a $30.9 billion industry by 2027. The number of vendors in the arena has increased dramatically. Utilities, once seen as obstructers to microgrids, are now building their own. Microgrid growth is … [Read more...]

Minigrids in Nigeria: A $20B Business Opportunity for the Greater Good

Nigeria

Minigrids represent a $20 billion business opportunity in Nigeria and a chance to improve the lives of over half the population that remain without electricity, according to a report released today. Prepared by the Rocky Mountain Institute and the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, the report focuses on how lack of electricity impedes business … [Read more...]

Portland Plans Microgrid Statues in Parks. Will Use Pedal-Power

microgrid statues

The city of Portland and three partners have launched a pilot to offer emergency microgrid support in a park statue that will charge cell phones and store emergency supplies. It’s a classic project for this green city, featuring solar, storage and pedal power in a visible, small public park on Portland State University's (PSU) campus. But … [Read more...]

Georgia Power & Georgia Tech Team to Make “Quantum Leap” in Microgrid Research

research microgrid

Two well-known Atlanta, Ga. institutions -- Georgia Power and the Georgia Institute of Technology -- are teaming to build a $10-$15 million research microgrid to achieve a “quantum leap” in understanding the technology. Owned by Georgia Power, a Southern Company utility, the 1.4 MW microgrid will serve several buildings at Georgia Tech's … [Read more...]

Watch out for these Roadblocks to California Microgrids

California microgrids

Certain California microgrids are in for trouble due to rules and regulations in the state that could boost costs and render them uneconomic, according to Alex Porteshawver, distributed energy policy manager for the Center for Sustainable Energy. The challenges apply to California microgrid projects on non-adjacent properties or projects … [Read more...]

California Seeks Way to Get Energy Choice Right This Time

customer choice

Given its influence, it’s never a pretty sight when California goes astray on energy policy. The energy crisis of 2000-01 still looms large. Its rolling blackouts and skyrocketing costs impaired America’s then nascent customer choice movement. But fast forward nearly two decades and customer choice is reborn -- although not in the way the … [Read more...]

Surprise, Confusion and Now a Closer Look at the Carson Microgrid

community microgrid

The city council of Carson, California has opted to take a closer look at a community microgrid proposed by Charge Bliss, although the city manager recommended that the project be nixed. With a September deadline looming for a potential $10 million state grant, the council scheduled a workshop on the microgrid for Tuesday, August 14. The … [Read more...]

Massachusetts Lawmakers Pass Bill that Opens New Prospects for Microgrids

microgrid opportunities in Massachusetts

Energy insiders see the emergence of new microgrid opportunities in Massachusetts from clean energy legislation passed last week and now awaiting the signature of Gov. Charlie Baker. An Act to Advance Clean Energy (H.4857) won unanimous Senate support and near-unanimous House support, with only one nay vote. The legislation opens up … [Read more...]

How Different the California Grid Will Look by 2025

Senate Bill 100

Quickly growing community choice aggregations (CCA) are expected to play a significant role in drawing 85 percent of customers away from California's investor-owned utilities by 2025, according to a new report. The community aggregation report was one of three on grid disruption released by Next 10, an organization with a goal of improving … [Read more...]