In a Zpryme article, Guidehouse Insights discusses how microgrids offer unique challenges and opportunities for utilities
The electricity delivery ecosystem is experiencing a transformation. Once a monopoly model, more utilities are beginning to use distributed energy resources (DER) and microgrids as deregulation and external competitors evolve the energy system.
In a Zpryme article, Peter Asmus, research director at Guidehouse Insights, explained why he believes utilities’ use of DER will emerge as the leading source of energy supply and services over the next decade.
According to Asmus, the DER assets, including fuel cells, solar PV, distributed wind, energy storage, and others, available to microgrids represent more than twice the amount of centralized generation capacity coming online by 2030.
“With microgrids, utilities can capture greater value from DER to support their traditional obligation to serve while recognizing the new energy landscape,” Asmus said. “By grouping resources into systems that can enhance, rather than impede, overall grid reliability and resiliency, utilities that deploy microgrids can optimize DER to provide bidirectional value.”
Asmus noted that utilities face unique challenges when deploying microgrids, however, he is hopeful that these issues will be addressed as the energy system continues to evolve.
“The role utilities are playing with grid-tied microgrids—and, more specifically, the grid-tied microgrids that help utilities address climate change impacts, wildfire threats, and the resiliency needs of the larger distribution system—represents a major shift in the microgrid market today,” Asmus said.