In this op-ed for pv magazine, Roy Torbert and José Juan Terrasa-Soler, of the Rocky Mountain Institute and Resilient Power Puerto Rico, respectively, analyze the cost of Puerto Rico’s energy recovery and the role that microgrids play in reconstruction and resiliency.
Two high-profile bankruptcies this year could serve as a warning for the potential pitfalls of pay-as-you-go and small scale, off-grid solar. However, Marcus Wiemann and David Lecoque of the Alliance for Rural Electrification say such business models can lead to long-term success and have a key role to play in providing power to the 1 billion people throughout the world who still live without electricity.
A World Bank presentation in London drew an encouraging picture for the Nigerian market by explaining why the mini grid segment will take off in the next 12 months.
Turkey introduced net metering in May, stoking hopes the scheme could add meaningful volumes of new solar generation capacity. Municipal governments elected in the spring can also boost the program’s success, provided the many layers of authority can work together, that is.
A report by the Powering Peace organization states UN missions in the Democratic Republic of Congo could reduce expense and pollution by using off-grid solar to power operations instead of diesel generators. Adding a 200 kW solar system with 200 kW/450 kWh of energy storage would reduce diesel consumption 80% for 10-year savings of almost $2.6 million, states the group.
The authorities expect to add 300 MW of rooftop solar in the next four years thanks to net metering regulations and hope the nation’s extensive clothing and textile industry will be encouraged to adopt PV.
The Ethiopian Electric Utility is seeking proposals for 25 mini grid projects which are being backed by the African Development Bank.
The French development agency and the environment ministry have a €1.6 million budget to finance novel off-grid projects from companies and NGOs operating with local partners in Africa.
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