Remember when powering your house with your vehicle was a wild idea?

A few years ago, the thought of using the batteries in electric vehicles (EVs) to provide vehicle-to-grid (V2G), vehicle-to-microgrid or vehicle-to-home power was just an idea, maybe even a wild idea. Now these programs are inching toward reality, with Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), Snohomish Public Utility District (PUD), … [Read more...]

PG&E’s ‘personal microgrid’ device aims for home resiliency in fire-prone areas

The use of fossil-fuel generators and home microgrids has increased in Pacific Gas & Electric's (PG&E) territory in response to fires and public safety power shutoffs (PSPS), and now the California utility has unveiled a device that makes it easier for homeowners to disconnect personal microgrids from the grid during outages and reconnect … [Read more...]

What 4 things are holding up community microgrids?

Community microgrid projects yield numerous benefits. Some keep police, hospitals, water plants and other critical services running during power outages. Others may serve remote outposts with no other source of reliable electricity. Community microgrids have even saved lives. Because of their impact, community microgrids are often studied. … [Read more...]

More electric vehicles mean more utility microgrids

Policy, economic and environmental issues are expected to dramatically boost demand for electric vehicles (EVs), a phenomenon that is spurring more utility microgrids. In fact, three utilities — Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), Portland General Electric (PGE) and Florida Power and Light (FPL) — have plans to deploy microgrids to take … [Read more...]

California senior community persists on microgrid

If persistence can win the day, the Oakmont Village Association, a community of seniors in a fire-prone region of Oakmont, California, may be the role model when it comes to building a community microgrid. We first reported on the group's efforts in 2020 when, frustrated with utility outages, the seniors decided to take matters into their … [Read more...]

Not Only Texas Went Dark in February: After Storm, Portland, Oregon Tests Resiliency Partnerships

Texas captured worldwide attention in February when a devastating storm crippled the state's power system. But at about the same time, and to much less fanfare, part of the Northwest struggled with similar issues. Portland, Oregon, experienced power outages because of severe weather that left about 200,000 customers in the dark, some for several … [Read more...]

Pandemic, Outages Kindle Homeowner Interest in Electric Reliability: Survey

A new survey by Sunrun underscores just how much homeowners are beginning to worry about electric reliability as California utilities continue to shut off power to prevent wildfires. The Sunrun study found a kindling in homeowner interest in acquiring batteries to avoid blackouts. In the study, 38% of homeowners out of 1,000 surveyed said … [Read more...]

How to Reduce PG&E’s Diesel Use During Fire Emergencies and Shutoffs?

Microgrids and distributed energy resources (DERs) can help reduce Pacific Gas & Electric’s (PG&E) diesel use during California fire emergencies, but only if new incentives are implemented and DER integration systems are created. Microgrids and DERs will be most helpful, at least in the short-term, if paired with other technologies, … [Read more...]

California Regulators Approve Changes to Support Microgrids as State Braces for Wildfire Season

Microgrids are getting a boost in California with an eye toward accelerating deployments in advance of the 2020 wildfire season thanks to actions voted on today by the California Public Utilities Commission. The commission ordered a number of short-term modifications that large investor-owned utilities must implement immediately: Accelerate … [Read more...]

California to Utilities: Move Faster On Microgrid Interconnection

Acknowledging that microgrids face tougher interconnection hurdles than other energy sources, California regulators are scheduled to take a vote that would push utilities to speed things up as wildfire season nears. The California Public Utilities Commission plans to vote June 11 on a proposal that would require large electric investor-owned … [Read more...]