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Commerce issues report on microgrid development

The Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources recently released “Minnesota Microgrids: Barriers, Opportunities, and Pathways Toward Energy Assurance (pdf).” This report takes an in-depth look at regulatory barriers to and opportunities for microgrid development to enhance energy assurance in the state of Minnesota, with recommendations to address barriers and identify pathways to facilitate microgrid development.

Commerce selected the Microgrid Institute Team, managed by Burr Energy LLC, to prepare the White Paper on microgrid development. The project was made possible by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy and the Minnesota Department of Commerce through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).

Microgrids represent one of many tools available to policy makers, community leaders, and the energy industry to support grid reliability and the ability to maintain critical community services during emergencies. Microgrids that can operate in isolation from a utility grid can improve utility reserve margins and help communities’ efforts to recover from natural disasters and restore normal operations—both in public infrastructure and economic activity.

The White Paper analysis and its Appendix E can be viewed at the Energy Reports page of the Commerce website.