Letter: Urge reps to support microgrid legislation

Published: 3/5/2019 12:01:24 AM

House Bill 183 would create a study committee that can point the way to developing the full potential of microgrids in New Hampshire.

Microgrids are a local grouping of an energy source (ideally renewable) together with energy storage and “load management” tools. They encourage innovative approaches to clean energy production and distribution, and have a key role to play in reaching renewable energy goals.

Microgrids can work independently as well as together with utility-scale energy grids. Because they use a local energy supply to serve local demand, the communities/facilities they serve are more resilient and safer because they don’t need to depend on the larger grid when the power goes down.

I attended the public hearing where the Science, Technology and Energy Committee heard HB 183. Some on the committee questioned the need for a study committee on microgrids, since they’re already allowed in New Hampshire. But those supporting the bill explained that there are a variety of technical and other details to be worked out in order to maximize the potential of microgrids in the state.

I’m especially interested to see how, as there are more microgrids providing a backup for the larger grid or functioning on their own, they might eliminate the need for new, large energy projects in New Hampshire. I also want to learn more about how they can help keep our energy costs down.

The House will vote on HB 183 this Thursday, March 7. Please urge your state representative to vote in favor of it.




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