An open industry association

Leader in promoting the greater use of DC and hybrid AC/DC microgrids & power systems


December 10, 2020 1:00 – 5:00 PM ET

Can Microgrids Reduce the Impact of PSPS and Blackout Events

California continues to fight-off disaster with its electricity supply and demand situation. And as California goes, so might the whole western grid region.   One of the most cost-effective solutions is thought to be a greater use of energy storage mostly coupled through microgrids of all types and sizes.  But policies regarding the treatment of microgrids by independent system operators had historically been inadequate and not very inclusive. So, in 2018, the California legislature enacted SB 1339, a bill directing the California Public Utilities Commission, in consultation with the California Energy Commission and California Independent System Operator, to undertake a number of activities to further develop policies related to microgrids.

While microgrid use is a growing trend in distributed electricity generation, storage smart use, we still just at the beginning of the market’s recognition of them as being a way to satisfy the growing demand for resilient and clean energy systems. That demand, paired with the decreasing cost of technology, is making microgrids more affordable, and a growing contingent of companies are offering microgrid components and systems across the corporate, buildings (both residential and commercial), data center, industry, and infrastructure sectors while utilities are carefully considering their role in the overall grid’s evolution.

The summit will explore the obstacles around financing microgrids, standardizing terminology, and improving interoperability, networking possibilities as well as the need to support utilities and grid operators. Topics will include how microgrids can hurt and/or help grid operations at the distribution level, successful and not-so-successful business and operational strategies involving microgrids, new business models that can turn potential business liabilities into business assets, and more. Also described will be which technologies hold the most promise for utility compatibility, use and support.  Several pilot and production use case will be reviewed and critiqued.  The audience will partake in an extended town hall style question, answer and comment section of the summit

The summit will be conducted for and with upper level management and decision makers. Invited stakeholders will include industry experts and management, including regulators, ISOs, utilities, technology providers and academics. Join us and our lineup of microgrid experts as we discuss market opportunities, technical standards, and the status of microgrids in the California Energy Plan.

Main Discussion Points:

  • Potential role of microgrids and storage
  • Report: Resiliency & Microgrids Working Group – Cal. Public Utilities Commission
  • Current concerns – Wild Fire impacts – PSPS – Status of rolling black-outs
  • Overviews of California’s generation assets, imported sources and renewables
  • Examination of use cases that apply to the region’s special needs

Target Audience:

  • California & regional utility top management/decision makers
  • Energy system consultants & academics
  • Utility regulators and government policy makers & advisors
  • Municipal energy managers and city planners
  • Regional ESCOs & utility equipment & service suppliers
  • Utility business development managers and technical staff


  • California Energy Commission and CPUC experts
  • Microgrid and utility technology experts
  • Associations/research collaboratives
  • Current microgrid use cases in the region
  • Utility OEMs and service providers
  • Municipal Managers and/or elected officials
  • Utility resiliency experts

Program Format:

  • Length: 4 hrs.
  • Speakers/panelists: 6-8 experts
  • Content outline:
    • Introductions – 10 min.
    • Opening Keynote – 20 min
    • Speaker presentations – 60 min.
    • Panel Discussion/Town Hall – 120 min.
      • 25% moderator questioning – 30 min.
      • 75% audience questioning/comments – 90 min.
    • Speaker/panelists summary comments – 25 min.
    • Closing Comments – 5 min