OBG, an advanced manufacturing and engineering firm based in Syracuse, NY explains why microgrids are so important for the evolution of the electric grid.
Why Microgrids Matter
“The electric grid is an engineering marvel but its aging infrastructure and climatic events require extensive upgrades to effectively meet the nation’s energy demands,” according to a new infographic by OBG.
- The average age of power plants is over 30 years old
- In the U.S., we now lose power 3x more than in 1984
- Seventy percent of transmission lines and transformers are now over 25 years old
- Severe weather events are the number one source of U.S. power outages
- Sever weather costs between $18 and $33 billion every year
What do we want? Reliable AND Resilient Service
- A more reliable grid is one with fewer and shorter power interruptions.
- A more resilient grid is one better prepared to recover from adverse events.
How Can The Electric Grid Become Reliable and Resilient While Staying Affordable?
Utilities are proposing multi billion dollar plans to make the grid more reliable and resilient by ‘hardening’ conventional grid infrastructure. The investments often result in only “modest improvements,” leaving communities and businesses at risk.
According to OBG, community-scale microgrids “are a key way in which the reliability and resiliency of the grid can be improved.” OBG has designed microgrids for clients who cannot afford the risk of blackouts. They have helped clients achieve energy independence, increased security, and reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and cost. Projects include the Maui High Performance Computing Center and City University of New York (CUNY) – LaGuardia Community College.