Max Witynski, UtilityDive
A new study from energy research and consulting firm Wood Mackenzie suggests that individual natural disasters may not be a primary motivator for microgrid deployments, in spite of the extreme-weather reliability benefits offered by the technology, Greentech Media reports.
Many microgrids are powered by natural gas or diesel, rather than a combination of clean technologies, although the growth of solar+storage in the wake of hurricanes in Puerto Rico is a notable exception, according to Greentech.
Growth opportunities for microgrids remain significant in areas with favorable policy and repeated disasters, according to Isaac Maze-Rothstein, WoodMac research associate and author of the study. Despite challenges, the systems are proliferating as businesses, universities and vital service providers like fire departments and hospitals seek to guarantee uninterrupted service.