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Microgrids

TBD

  • Energy powers our world and illuminates our lives.

    Traditionally, a centralized utility grid supplies power to homes, businesses, and other buildings. The centralized grid is a large, interconnected network of high-voltage wires that serve a large area by delivering electricity from generation plants to consumers over long distances.

    Microgrid technologies can provide energy to supplement and enhance the power customers receive from the national grid. If a microgrid generates more electricity than a neighborhood needs, the surplus can feed into the national grid. These are “interconnected” microgrids. If the centralized grid goes out, the microgrid can take over and continue supplying power to end-users. These are known as “islanded” microgrid. “Isolated” microgrids are not connected to the centralized grid. These are often used to provide electricity access in rural and/or remote areas where it is difficult to extend a distribution line.

    A microgrid is an independent power source that uses local energy resources. A microgrid’s energy supply can come from solar panels, wind turbines, or large capacity batteries that leverage renewable energy sources and generate clean energy. Since microgrids use local energy resources to serve local demand, it not only offers reliable, efficient energy, but also has potential for saving energy costs.  

    The use of microgrids and renewable energy can also boost the economy and protect the environment. Microgrids can avoid environmental harms such as fuel spills, reduce reliance on imported fuels, strengthen energy security, help stimulate economic growth, and improve quality of life. And because renewable energy’s growth outpaces traditional energy industry, it also generates more jobs and higher-wage employment.

    Microgrids can also provide resilience in the face of climate events. Because centralized grids are interconnected, all users are affected by outages, which may be caused by everything from storms to human error to equipment failure; however, microgrids offer a solution for ensuring continuation of energy, or energy resiliency, during central power outages.

    There is a global need to reduce emissions, and investments in microgrids offer a viable option to tackle climate change. Tapping into local, sustainable, and consistent energy supplies that do not generate greenhouse gases reduces our carbon footprint. Renewable energy solutions are becoming cheaper, more reliable, and more efficient every day, which can lead microgrids to become the affordable, sustainable, and modern energy solution of the future.

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