Microgrid News from NRG Energy, Cummins, USA Microgrids, Navigant

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Partnership to watch: NRG Energy and Cummins

Here is one to watch. Energy giant NRG Energy and engine manufacturer Cummins have formed a partnership to offer distributed energy systems for commercial and industrial customers.


Courtesy of Cummins

The partnership brings together NRG’s distributed energy capabilities with Cummins’ generators into a platform designed to save customers as much as 15 percent over their current energy costs, often at no enrollment expense.

Cummins and NRG will form a joint development team for sales, marketing and maintenance of energy assets.

The companies say that the platform will give customers more control over their energy future, and significantly reduce environmental impact and grid stress.

While the formal partnership is new, the companies have implemented distributed energy models for several customers over recent years and are now ready to bring it to more customers throughout the U.S. Northeast.

“Cummins and NRG have a shared vision to use new technologies, like this platform, to provide customers with reliable power and help navigate the increasingly complex energy market,” said Robert Gaudette, president of NRG Business Solutions. “This is just one example of how we can continue to optimize new and existing energy technologies so customers can use less, and pay less, for electricity. The power producer of tomorrow will do more than just move electrons; it will direct them where needed most – with measurable benefits for the customer, the grid and the environment.”

USA Microgrids wins Connecticut contract

The Connecticut town of Westbrook has selected USA Microgrids, an OATI company, to develop and submit a proposal for the state’s microgrid grant program.

The town selected USA Microgrids through a competitive solicitation.

USA Microgrids conducted an analysis of the area, composed a microgrid design, and competed with other companies in the bid for the project. The initial proposal was then evaluated and rated by experience and qualification, technical approach, ability to implement, sustainable design and financial terms.

“We look forward to working with the Town of Westbrook as a partner,” said David Heim, chief strategy officer of USA Microgrids. “This collaborative effort showcases how solidly a microgrid can be put together to increase reliability and provide environmental and economic benefits for the state of Connecticut. We anxiously await DEEP’s positive consideration of our grant proposal.”

Connecticut is offering up to $30 million in its most recent round of microgrid grants.

EV technologies expected to top DER growth in next decade

A new report from Navigant Research finds distributed energy resources growing from 132.4 GW in 2017 to 528.4 GW in 2026.

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Interestingly, electric vehicle technologies will lead the way in the next decade, outpacing other forms of distributed energy.

“For countries and regions that started their energy transition early, the role of distributed generation technologies will be less while the technologies that help integrate this generation will play a key role in the deployment of DER infrastructure over the forecast period,” says Roberto Rodriguez Labastida, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “In this realm, when and how the electrification of transport happens will have a significant impact on the development of DER deployments.”

Indeed, the influence of increasing DER deployments will vary in different countries and regions due to the existing and planned additions of centralized generation, according to the report. However, globally, distributed generation is expected to lead DER installations in 2017, and electric vehicle charging and flexibility technologies, such as demand response and energy storage, are expected to outpace competing solutions in the next decade.

The report examines the global market for DERs, providing forecasts for installed capacity and revenue in the commercial and industrial (C&I) and residential segments.

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About Elisa Wood

Elisa Wood is the chief editor of MicrogridKnowledge.com. She has been writing about energy for more than three decades for top industry publications. Her work also has been picked up by CNN, the New York Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal Online and the Washington Post.