Utilities to increase microgrid capacity by nearly five times by 2029


Global utilities are expected to increase their microgrid’s capacity by 19% per annum between 2020 and 2029, according to Guidehouse Insights.

Utilities will increase microgrids capacity from 779.9MW to 3.739.6MW during the forecast period.

Increasing power outages and deployments of distributed energy resources (DER) are forcing utilities to confront the limits of traditional grid infrastructure. As a result, more utilities are showing interest in microgrids and are working to overcome a past bias against the technology, due to fears of negative impacts on incumbent grids and potential loss of revenue.

The unregulated branches of utilities are pushing the envelope, particularly on the financing front, by fostering project development outside of traditional regulatory realms that have revolved around traditional rate base systems.

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Peter Asmus, research director with Guidehouse Insights, said: “There is a growing recognition of how microgrids can overlap and integrate with platforms such as DER management systems and virtual power plants (VPPs), which proves that creative aggregations can provide value across the new energy landscape.

“Forward-looking utilities seek to refine their role within the emerging Energy Cloud framework.”

The lack of an industry/globally recognised standard or uniform for microgrids deployment and utility ownership structure has raised questions regarding whether microgrids are a good fit for utilities.

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