EDF Renewables Installs Microgrid at Headquarters to Save Money

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EDF Renewables North America has installed a microgrid at its headquarters in San Diego that the company expects will save it millions of dollars over the life of the project, partly through lowered energy and demand charges.

EDF renewables

By Smile Fight/Shutterstock.com

The new microgrid comes amid a surge in microgrid development in California, partly driven by efforts to ease the effects of wildfire-related power outages.

EDF’s microgrid consists of a 209-kW solar carport, a 182-kW solar rooftop, a 280-kW/538-kWh battery storage system and 43 electric vehicle charging stations, the company said.

The solar and battery storage system is run by EDF Store & Forecast’s Energy Management System, which manages the facility’s energy usage patterns, including flattening the EV charging load, according to the company.

“By combining EV infrastructure with solar and storage, we are able to offer the lowest cost of charging — for both capital and operating expenses,” Patrick Kelly, EDF Renewables director of EV operations, said in a statement. 

Microgrid made sense with TOU rates

The system made financial sense, especially when San Diego Gas & Electric’s time-of-use rates changed last year, Kelly said. Like other utilities in California, SDG&E offers a range of time-of-use programs that offer lower-priced electricity during off-peak periods.

The EV charging system uses adaptive load management technology that maximizes charging while lowering or eliminating the need for utility upgrades. It does so by managing charging based on a driver’s demand, building load, onsite generation and other factors, according to EDF Renewables. 

The solar and battery storage parts of the project qualify for federal investment tax credits if the battery is charged only by solar power in the project’s first five years, EDF Renewables said. 

The storage system also qualifies for the California Public Utilities Commission’s Self-Generation Incentive Program, which provides rebates for qualifying customer-sited distributed energy systems.

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