Before Puerto Rico had a chance to recover from Hurricane Maria, in 2017, it was rocked by earthquakes and then, in September 2022, the island was struck again – this time by Hurricane Fiona. These disasters severely impacted Puerto Rico’s infamously fragile power grid, but have emboldened local communities to take power into their own hands through solar and battery storage, and increasingly in the form of microgrids. Compelled by catastrophic circumstances, Puerto Rico must now push toward energy resilience and in the process may see itself become a model not just for other islands, but mainland grids as well.
A recently published report from the International Energy Agency’s Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme on building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) digitalisation found many industry professionals are unsure of a suitable method for estimating shading in BIPV projects.
Australia’s first hybrid solar and renewable hydrogen microgrid has officially launched as green hydrogen production began at Horizon Power’s demonstration plant in the coastal community of Denham in Western Australia’s Gascoyne region.
At least 600 disability and community housing residents in Sydney are set to receive a lifeline amidst the cost of living crisis in the shape of fully funded solar systems. The residential solar PPA model of the Community Solar Program pilot should see benefits for residents, developers and investors.
As parts of northern Victoria remain inundated by flood waters and power outages, the state government has announced $7.5 million (USD 4.7 million) in funding for improved energy resilience through rooftop solar and batteries across 24 towns deemed vulnerable to extreme weather events.
Islandable microgrids are a growing niche, especially in remote regions at the end of electricity networks or parts of the world prone to natural disasters and outages. Renewably powered microgrids can provide a community with more stability and operate independently, so vulnerable regions are not reliant on distant sources of generation, as was the case during Australia’s Black Summer bushfires of 2019-20, when communities were left powerless. From California to Australia’s southern coast, the study and deployment of microgrids is on the rise. pv magazine’s Blake Matich takes a look.
Smart technology that controls energy flow on power grids could soon be the norm in the Northern Territory with a trial launched in the outback town of Alice Springs that will test the economic and energy efficiency of a rooftop solar-driven virtual power plant.
With Australia’s appetite for solar energy fuelling a projected surge in end-of-life solar panels, the Victorian government has launched a $10 million program to help deal with the more than 180,000 tonnes of PV panels expected to enter the state’s waste stream by 2035.
Victoria’s ongoing transition to renewable energy sources, including the installation of hundreds of thousands of rooftop solar PV systems, has helped the state “smash” its 2020 emission reduction targets on the path to net zero by 2050.
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