A microgrid is a localized energy system consisting of distributed energy sources (like demand management, storage, and generation) and loads capable of operating in parallel with, or independently from, the main power grid. Microgrids are modern, small-scale versions of the centralized electricity system.
Microgrids seek to achieve specific local goals for the community such as:
- Reliability and redundancy
- Utility cost reductions and extra revenue for the community served
- Diversification of energy sources
- Carbon emission reduction
- Address local load growth restrictions
Like the larger power grid, smart microgrids generate, distribute, and regulate the flow of electricity to consumers, but do so locally. Smart microgrids are an ideal way to integrate renewable energy resources at the community level while allowing the consumer participation in the electricity enterprise.
Microgrids & First Nations
The benefit of microgrids to some of Canada’s remote communities would be extremely positive. Reliability and cost would be major factors immediately beneficial to the community. A valuable revenue source would be developed completely independent of economic factors or competitive markets. These projects would also lead to jobs, training and other opportunities within these rural locations.
Imagine if some of Canada’s indigenous communities, communities known for living in harmony and protecting the environment, could also become a shining example and global leaders in the push for safe renewable energy? This is a future all Canadians could take great pride in.
In fact, these projects are already being brought to fruition. The Village of Hartley Bay, located 650 km North West of Vancouver, BC, is a remote, off-grid coastal community in the Gitga’at Nation. Since implementing a microgrid the community has experienced improved utility operation and reduced costs and emissions. For more information you can see Natural Resources Canada’s official page on the Hartley Bay project.
At Totem Contracting Ltd. we are committed to moving forward with the mandates presented by the province towards renewables and our indigenous communities. We want to get word out about these projects. If you are a member of the media seeking information on microgrids and renewable energy in the province, be sure to request our press kit and get in touch with us.