In our current age of sustainability and ever- rising energy prices, microgrids are getting new attention as an excellent alternative solution, which makes sense because they are reliable round the clock on-site power generation for large facilities. Microgrids are distributed energy resources (DERs), such as solar panels, wind turbines, batteries, fuel cells, microturbines, and other smaller-scale power generation technologies. They are ideal for hospitals, military bases, college campuses or large industrial facilities, for they can be designed to meet the needs of any large facility, even with multiple buildings on the same land. Microgrids can help facilities increase resiliency, optimize their energy spend all while meeting their sustainability goals.
An Addition to Your Risk Management Strategy
It is critical for health systems to be prepared and plan for the unexpected to prevent fatal failures. Having an integrated energy strategy to ensure connectivity during a catastrophic event is critical for health systems to have in place. Since microgrids have an independent source of energy, they enable facilities to disconnect from the utility-grid and allow for critical facilities to continue to operate in the event of a utility-grid outage.
The Value of Controlling Your Own Energy
Microgrids may or may not be connected to the existing power grid, depending on the level of autonomy that the facility desires. If connected, they can sell excess power back to the grid, to defray costs. Even if a microgrid is connected to the normal power lines, through a series of computer-controlled switches, it can disconnect quickly and easily. The facility would become an “Energy Island” if you will.
Why does improving local management of power supply and demand matter? Microgrids allow operators to optimize their energy mix, helping to store energy during off-peak times and enabling organizations to avoid peak demand charges. Additionally, tax credits, such those intended by the Inflation Reduction Act will give facilities more incentive for implementing a microgrid.
A Way to Meet Sustainable Commitments
Carbon reduction mandates and continuous social pressures are calling for organizations to incorporate renewable energy sources. Microgrids can run on renewables and are increasingly leveraging them to allow for the for operators to be more sustainable.
Historically, healthcare systems solely relied on backup diesel generators for their emergency energy source. These diesel generators can be costly and emit pollutants such as nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and greenhouse gases, contributing to air pollution and climate change. Diesel generators must be tested and run on a regular basis as part of a maintenance schedule, which is inefficient. In addition, some states have begun to ban the installation of any new diesel generators. Microgrids are gaining attention for replacing outdated pollution creating generators as they are more efficient and cost prohibitive. They are a good alternative to save the organization time and money, while having less impact on the environment.
If you need more information about microgrids or determining what your energy resource strategy should be feel free to learn more at https://www.pixelhealth.com/energy-and-sustainable-practice/ or contact us today. https://www.pixelhealth.com/contact/