Boston Identifies Opportunities for Microgrid Development

Boston Identifies Dozens of Potential Microgrid Sites in Major Community Energy Study

Microgrid Knowledge, February 17, 2016. Image credit: skeeze

Boston has identified dozens of potential microgrid sites that together with other community energy projects could save as much as $1.7 billion, according to a new report issued by the city.

The Boston Community Energy Study maps specific locations for three kinds of microgrids: multipurpose microgrids, energy justice microgrids and emergency microgrids.

Like many cities in the Northeast, Boston is focusing heavily on improving grid resiliency, energy efficiency and greenhouse gas reduction with  microgrids. The report is part of an emerging campaign in Massachusetts toward creating community microgrids. Separately, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center this month issued a request for information seeking microgrid developers, a precursor to a $650,000 microgrid grant offer it intends to release February 29.

As a result, Boston identified 42 “hot spots” for microgrids, energy storage, combined heat and power, district energy and community solar.

The city used simulated building data because by law it cannot publicly release the actual energy use. The simulation included hourly demand data for lighting, plug load, heating, cooling and hot water. It achieves a 94 percent accuracy level for electricity use and 83 percent for natural gas, according to the report.

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