Why California Should Employ Microgrids in Fire-Prone Areas

In the Los Angeles Times, Navigant Research explained how microgrids can help sustain power during preemptive power shutoffs

Recent concerns about utility companies sparking wildfires in California has raised questions about alternative ways to manage energy, specifically during dry and windy days when fires are more likely to ignite. As an immediate solution, some utilities are considering large, community-wide power shutoffs to prevent wildfires from starting. 

In an article for the Los Angeles Times, Peter Asmus, associate director at Navigant, discussed why employing microgrids is a good solution for keeping power on during preemptive power shutoffs.

Microgrids would allow utilities to shut down power lines without cutting off all electricity to critical infrastructure. While still relatively expensive, Asmus believes that microgrids can be used to maintain electricity around fire stations, water utilities, and emergency shelters in areas facing power shutdowns. 

He explained microgrids that incorporate solar and battery power are especially valuable for these areas, and, unlike diesel generators, these power sources will never run out of fuel and can be recharged daily.

Read the Los Angeles Times Article

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