Caribbean Ripe for DER and Microgrid Development but Needs Financial Boost

The Caribbean is ripe for microgrid development because of the challenges of hurricanes and COVID-19, but financial constraints are getting in the way. The Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) is proposing some solutions. This year’s hurricane season is expected to be worse than usual, while the islans are still coming back from the impacts of … [Read more...]

PG&E: Partnering with Communities on Microgrids “Critically Important”

Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) described partnering with communities on microgrids as “critically important” yesterday following approval by California regulators of the utility’s plan to use microgrids to reduce wildfire-related power outages. The approval was part of a larger order issued by the public utilities commission to … [Read more...]

Maryland Announces Funding for 14 Microgrid Projects

Maryland yesterday announced winners in its resilience solicitation, 14 facilities that speak to the range of operations now pursuing microgrid projects — from marginalized neighborhoods to food production operations to a marine terminal. The winners will divvy up $1.05 million provided by the Maryland Energy Administration’s (MEA) Resilient … [Read more...]

Three Key Ideas Emerging about Microgrids in an Era of Societal Disruption

Microgrids are among the disruptive class of tech, that which challenges the status quo to improve society. However, lately a technology’s worth is based less on how well it disrupts and more on how well it responds to societal disruption. With the disruption brought by COVID-19, products like teleconferencing, home delivery and telemedicine … [Read more...]

Battery Storage for Microgrids Growing Globally, But Needs Utility Support

Energy storage systems are on the rise as a component of new microgrids or portable energy supplies that have traditionally used fossil fuel-based resources. But utilities need to undertake more widespread usage of storage on permanent microgrids, according to Guidehouse Insights. Peter Asmus, who developed the “Energy Storage for Microgrids … [Read more...]

No Resiliency Strategy? You’re Taking a Big Risk, Report Warns Utilities

Utilities without resilience strategies are taking a risk that jeopardizes their companies and customers, says a new report from Accenture. The report, “From Reliability to Resilience: Confronting the Challenges of Extreme Weather,” finds that most electric utility grid executives agree that extreme weather due to climate change poses … [Read more...]

Xcel Energy Reaches Settlement Agreement on $23.4M Microgrid Project in Colorado

Xcel Energy has reached a settlement agreement with consumer, regulatory, environmental and labor interests which, if approved by state regulators, allows the utility to move ahead with a $23.4 microgrid project. Now before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (Proceeding 19A-0225E), the settlement paves the way for seven microgrids that … [Read more...]

Microgrid Tariff Proposed by Hawaiian Electric Faces Industry Criticism

A microgrid tariff proposed by Hawaiian Electric (HECO) is receiving mixed reviews as the state attempts to break new ground in creating microgrid compensation. Now before the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC), the utility proposed the tariff in the first phase of a regulatory effort to fulfill a microgrid law (Act 200) signed in July … [Read more...]

Remote Microgrid Built by Alliant Energy Cuts Utility Costs by Half

Alliant Energy has built a remote microgrid to power a Wisconsin state park as a less expensive alternative to replacing an overhead power line. The microgrid at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) site could become a model for other Alliant microgrids, according to Michael Graves, Alliant senior engineer. “We’ll monitor how … [Read more...]

Microgrid Bill that Clarifies Utility & Operator Roles Approved by Maine House

The Maine House has approved a microgrid bill that would open the state to microgrid development and clarify utility and operator roles. L.D. 13, passed by the House on a 85-54 vote in mid-March, directs the Maine Public Utilities Commission to approve microgrid proposals of up to 25 MW if they are in the public interest. The bill … [Read more...]