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...]

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...]

Maine Lawmakers Revive Microgrid Bill as New Governor Creates a Pro-Green Climate

microgrids

Microgrids that regulators determine “serve the public interest” are back in play in Maine this year as lawmakers try to pass a bill that fell short a year ago. Legislators passed a bipartisan bill last year more clearly defining how microgrids could be created, but former Republican Gov. Paul LePage vetoed it. Newly elected Gov. Janet Mills … [Read more...]

Move Over, Lithium Ion: Thermal Energy Storage Finds a Niche

thermal storage

Thermal storage is gaining ground in refrigeration applications, providing demand management for one of utilities’ most energy-intensive industries. Industrial refrigeration consumes more energy per cubic foot than any other utility load, said Collin Coker, vice president, sales and marketing, Viking Cold Solutions. Thermal energy storage … [Read more...]

Massachusetts and California Rank High in Energy Democracy: Report

energy democracy

Massachusetts, California, New York and Illinois are the top four states for energy democracy, as ranked by their commitment to boosting community-level renewable energy, according to a second annual Community Power Scorecard. The scorecard, released by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, names these states as stars because their energy … [Read more...]

Update: New Hampshire Microgrid Legislation Makes Progress

legislation

A New Hampshire legislative committee last week okayed legislation to study microgrids. The bill now goes to the state House of Representatives for a vote on Thursday, March 14. The Committee on Science, Technology and Energy approved HB 183 in a 12-7 vote along party lines, with Democrats in support, according to Howard Moffett, a Democrat … [Read more...]

Lawmakers Take up Microgrid Bills in New Hampshire and Hawaii

microgrid bill

Microgrid advocates are urging New Hampshire voters to call their legislators in support of a microgrid bill scheduled for vote March 7. HB 183 would establish a committee to study changes in law necessary to allow for microgrids in electrical supply. Now before the New Hampshire General Court’s Committee on Science, Technology and … [Read more...]

Here’s What’s Driving Energy Storage Markets — and How to Benefit

energy storage markets

Energy storage markets are growing quickly, driven by regulations, demand charges, plus utilities’ need to integrate solar into the grid and avoid building new peaking power plants. In fact, innovative utility-scale energy storage projects are popping up across the nation, with utilities and cities using storage to avoid building underground … [Read more...]

How Utilities Will Thrive — Eventually — with a DER-rich Grid

utilities

In the near term, utilities need to beware. The next two years bring strong risk that customers will go off-grid with rooftop solar and other distributed energy resources (DERs) while using the utility for occasional backup, says a new report. But by 2040 the prognosis changes. Electric vehicles (EV) and electric heating -- both … [Read more...]

North Carolina Regulators Cancel Hearing, Moving Duke Microgrid Closer to Fruition

Hot Springs Microgrid

Duke Energy’s planned Hot Springs microgrid in western North Carolina moved closer to fruition earlier this week when state regulators canceled an evidentiary hearing scheduled for Feb. 25. In canceling the expert hearing, the North Carolina Utilities Commission noted that there was public support and no opposition to the proposed … [Read more...]