Alaska is global leader in microgrid technology with one of highest concentrations of renewably powered microgrid projects in the world. In this episode of Grid Talk, host Marty Rosenberg talks with Peter Asmus who is Executive Director of Alaska Microgrid Group. The group offers access to expertise from the utility industry and research community to leverage decades of experience designing, building and operating microgrid projects across Alaska.
“What’s unique about Alaska is it’s number one in the U.S. for total microgrid capacity,” said Asmus.
Just about every Alaskan is served by a microgrid.
“At last count I saw something like 3,500 megawatts of installed capacity. Most of those systems are what I would call remote power systems where there is no grid and that’s what’s unusual about Alaska”.
Microgrids loom large over the future of an electric grid that will be integrating increasing amounts of renewable energy, providing ever greater levels of resilience, Asmus said. “I see microgrids becoming a bigger and bigger thing as climate change impacts accelerate and the power outage rate keeps going up. People are so dependent on electricity; they’re going to want some form of a microgrid resiliency.”
Peter Asmus is a leading global authority on microgrid markets and other emerging trends in sustainable and resilient energy systems. Author of four books, he has been writing about and analyzing emerging trends in energy policy, technology and applications since 1986. Most recently, he was Research Director with Guidehouse Insights where he started up the world’s first global data set on microgrids and developed a forecast methodology to estimate future growth. Additionally, he was editor of the Clean Power Journal, assistant editor of California Policy Choices, and has written for several energy trade publications, including Windpower Monthly and Electric Utility Week.
Asmus holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin.