A small town in California is the first town to be fully powered by a solar and battery microgrid. Each home is fitted with a solar panel system, backup battery storage, electric heater and water heater, and a main control panel, and EV charging capabilities. The homes are connected to the solar powered grids and don’t have their own panels on the roof of the homes. The backup batteries are for emergencies in case of power outages. The town is located in Menifee, California and consists of approximately 200 home. This is the first of a few prototypes towns and serves as a model for future microgrid towns to come.
Microgrids are when a small area has its own power supply of electricity that derives from solar panels, wind power etc., so they are not relying as heavily on their local electric provider. They are a new way for businesses and communities to lower their carbon emissions, have back-up power in case of power outages and save money on their utility bills. Many organizations are setting net-zero carbon emissions goals as a way to promote their sustainability initiatives.
All types of sectors are able to embrace microgrids and solar energy as a part of their sustainability plan. Some interstates are using solar panel fields to power their microgrids as a way to off-set the cost of electricity when they install EV charging stations at certain rest stops. A town in Maryland is using microgrids to help power the electric buses being used by their municipality.