Microgrids Building Resiliency in San Francisco


San Francisco braces for the Big One with microgrids

Green Biz, October 26, 2015. Image credit: Jeff Perkins

Just last year, a 6.0 magnitude earthquake knocked out power to more than 40,000 people in the San Francisco Bay area. This was the fourth earthquake of magnitude 6 or greater to hit the Bay Area since 1979, including the 6.9 magnitude earthquake that disrupted the 1989 World Series and knocked out power to 1.4 million people.

In 2015 the city received funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Market Pathways Program to integrate solar and energy storage into San Francisco’s emergency response plans. The local utility, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), one of California’s four major investor-owned utilities, was written into the grant as well.

The goal is to develop more resilient buildings to support vulnerable populations in the face of natural disasters such as an earthquake.

So Broomhead, along with Rubin of PG&E, Russell Carr of Arup and Chris Lotspeich of Celtic Energy joined Accelerator to help San Francisco create a roadmap for deploying solar with storage for resilience both locally and nationally.

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