San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians Installs Microgrid

San Pasqual Microgrid

(Credit: Gridscape)

by | Jun 10, 2022

San Pasqual Microgrid

(Credit: Gridscape)

A microgrid has been installed for the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians to help the community with energy resiliency, especially for its critical facilities.

The microgrid has been developed in a partnership with Gridscape and Industria Power and will help the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians (SPBMI) power critical infrastructure, specifically in the face of natural events and planned outages. The system will utilize electricity that has been produced locally and is an integrated renewable energy system.

It will help provide energy and backup power for critical facilities such as the San Pasqual Tribal Hall, law enforcement, the fire department, housing services, and education buildings that serve as community shelters. The microgrid will also help SPBMI with its energy and resiliency plan and help the tribe with its sustainability targets.

The system has controls by Gridscape and will supply solar energy for SPBMI’s electricity needs during daytime hours. The microgrid will store excess energy generation for use during peak pricing periods, as well as provide reserve power for use during utility outages, including power shutoffs or natural events.

During a grid outage, the microgrid enters an islanded mode and powers the entire site from a combination of solar production and energy stored in the system’s batteries, the tribe says. Gridscape says the system can provide as much as 90% independence from grid energy, which will reduce overall costs as well as provide the clean backup power.

Microgrids are key pieces of power resiliency and are being used more widely, especially in states like California that are prone to outages from high demand or natural causes, like wildfires. They are popping up more in smaller communities, such as military bases, as well as for individual companies. Bimbo Bakeries in California installed microgrids at six locations, for example.

Overall, the microgrid market is expected to grow by more than 16% through 2026, according to Research and Markets, and is helping stabilize grids and meet the demand for reliable electricity.

The San Pasqual Reservation is home to more than 1,500 residents in San Diego County, California, near Valley Center.

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