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

non-wires alternatives

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

power outages

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...]

Microgrid Care: The Ins and Outs for a Lasting Energy System

Your microgrid is online. You learned a lot while building it. Now there’s more to learn about its maintenance. A new handbook from S&C Electric acts as a guide to the ins and outs of microgrid care for both day-to-day operations and long-term needs. Who’s in charge of operations and maintenance  If you haven’t identifed who’s responsible … [Read more...]

Panasonic and Indian Utility Team up to Roll Out Urban Microgrids

urban microgrids

Panasonic and Indian electricity utility group BYPL recently installed four solar-plus-storage-based urban microgrids on rooftops at the utility's offices in the Delhi region, piloting what development partners expect will be many more to come. The partnership's microgrids offer 5-7 kW of solar with daily battery energy storage capacity … [Read more...]

History of Microgrids in the US: From Pearl Street to Plug-and-Play

history of microgrids

While it may seem that microgrids are new, the history of microgrids shows they have been around in some form for years in the US — although they haven’t always been called microgrids. The first one was introduced by Thomas Edison in 1882 at his Pearl Street Station, which combined heat and power and produced electricity and thermal … [Read more...]

Utilities Propose Resiliency Adders that Could Benefit California Microgrids

resiliency adders

As California braces for a hot summer and another wildfire season, the state’s two largest utilities have put forward proposals aimed at mitigating those risks, including "resiliency adders," incentives that could encourage the development of microgrids. Both Pacific Gas and Electric and Southern California Edison (SCE) have petitioned the … [Read more...]

Solar Housing Linked to Bronzeville Microgrid Provides Social Justice, Technology Research

Bronzeville Microgrid

Chicago's Bronzeville microgrid project is demonstrating the social justice benefits of decentralized energy with the completion this month of solar installations on 660 residential units in the Dearborn Homes Community. The project, a partnership of Exelon subsidiary Commonwealth Edison (ComEd), developer VLV Development and the Chicago Housing … [Read more...]

PJM Begins Process to Study How Utility Connected Microgrids Fit in its Market

utility connected microgrids

The PJM Interconnection has begun a process to explore the role of utility connected microgrids in the organization’s wholesale power market. The process “is part of a general effort to make sure PJM rules can accommodate all types of cases and resources and make sure there is nothing that prohibits incorporating microgrids,” Andrew Levitt, … [Read more...]

With California’s Wildfire Season Coming, San Diego Microgrids Face Two-Year Delay

microgrids

As California’s wildfire season approaches, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) faces regulatory delays of up to two years for 100 MW of proposed storage-backed microgrids that aim to provide resiliency, especially to protect essential community services. “As a utility company, our mandate and charge is to provide safe and reliable … [Read more...]

Are California Utilities Heading Down the Wrong Path as Wildfire Season Approaches?

wildfires

A new report warns that California may be heading down the wrong path when it comes to preparing its grid for wildfires and points to microgrids as a better solution. Utilities are proposing a range of costly investments to the central grid that may take decades, which still leave “substantial risk” for power outages, says “California’s … [Read more...]