Microgrids are local energy grids that can operate autonomously from the local grid. They can be powered by battery energy storage, distributed generators and/or renewable power sources such as solar panels or wind turbines. The three main benefits of microgrids are backup power, lower costs and increased sustainability. Communities and organizations around the world depend on microgrids as a source of renewable power and a tool for increased energy independence. The benefits of microgrids are outlined in this article.
Read What is a Microgrid?
Benefits of microgrids
The three main benefits of microgrids are their ability to provide backup power, cut costs and lower carbon emissions. These benefits are outlined below.
1. Provides backup power
Because microgrids can function autonomously from the local electric grid, they can be an essential resource in case of an emergency. During a stormer power outage, for example, a microgrid can be disconnected from the main grid with a switch via the microgrid controller. In addition to operating autonomously from the grid, microgrids can help a macrogrid, or the larger local grid, recover from a system outage by re-energizng the grid.
2. Cut costs
Microgrids can cut cots by minimizing losses. Because microgrids are local and energy generated is used on-site, less energy is required to deliver it. Energy that would otherwise be lost through transmission lines and escaped heat is also utilized within microgrids. Heat energy is used to heat water or buildings, saving microgrid users money.
3. Lower carbon emissions
Microgrids can be powered by renewable energy sources, offering a clean alternative to fossil fuel generated power. Energy storage can also be used to balance microgrid energy production and usage. This renewable power generation will lower a community or organization’s carbon emissions and demonstrate a commitment to sustainability. Demonstrating a commitment to sustainability can go a long way towards attracting likeminded individuals to a community or organization.
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