Energy and Mines


Efficient PPAs may propel solar-diesel micro-grid deployment , study says

Efficient PPAs may propel solar-diesel micro-grid deployment , study says
September 01
10:15 2017

Streamlining PPAs for hybrid microgrids may hasten their adoption, according to a new study from Munich-based consultancy THEnergy. While hybrid-diesel systems have become popular in remote areas and industrial settings, the contracts for hybrid systems are much more complex than for standard, renewable-only PPAs.

The report lauds the mining sector as an industry pioneer in integrating wind and solar with diesel systems. Industries that produce cement, food and beverages, textiles, and salt are following suit as they become more comfortable with renewables and battery prices fall. Even so, matching generation to total demand is still a challenge; companies are pursuing renewables to reduce reliance on diesel, rather than eliminating it entirely. That means the issue of overly complex PPAs for hybrid systems won’t go away anytime soon.

“As a consultancy specializing in microgrids, we have been pushed by our clients to specifically cover the PPA topic,” THEnergy Managing Director Thomas Hillig says. “We have conceived workshops for optimizing PPA negotiations and also accompany our clients individually in the process. Our offer is aimed at both sides, renewable energy developers as well as commercial and industrial off-takers.” 

Clear responsibilities should be defined for hybrid plants at remote mining sites where connecting to the grid isn’t possible, and where there’s no alternative offtaker if the contract partner doesn’t pay. The study also says that covering production losses in the agreement will help ease new offtakers’ minds.

Read more at PV Magazine.

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Kate Dougherty

Kate Dougherty