// WA is carving out a global footprint in the renewable energy space with Perth announced as the base of a world-first organisation to accelerate the global development of the microgrid sector…
The newly-formed International Microgrid Association (IMA) is a not-for-profit group that includes a growing coalition of members of the global microgrid value chain – such as Cisco, Schneider Electric, Telstra, UWA, Woodside, ATCO Gas and Horizon Power – who are committed to leading change and rapidly progressing the clean energy future.
IMA Chair Terry Mohn (pictured) said WA was the ideal base as the state was home to one of the largest microgrid networks in the world.
“Founding IMA member Horizon Power owns and operates 37 microgrids across the state and through its world-leading distributed energy resources projects and trials, WA is leading the international microgrid sector,” he said.
“We are thrilled to be championing the decentralised energy future and a new era of industry growth and see it as part of WA future-proofing beyond the mining, oil and gas industries.”Terry Mohn
Microgrids are a collection of generation, storage and load resources, leveraging a confined distribution system that constantly balances power flow with high reliability, low costs and minimal emissions. Microgrids solve many of the issues associated with integration of renewables into the electric power network.
Terry said the focus of the industry-first development body was to bring together key players to support, through cross-sector collaboration, investment and acceleration of innovative, cost effective microgrid technologies and capabilities across the world.
“In doing this, our aim is to underscore the reliability, resilience, security and inter-operability of these modern energy systems,” he said.
“With approximately 1 billion people still living without access to electricity, and rising electricity costs and outages a growing issue for many, the IMA is very excited about supporting microgrid development, deployment and commercialisation and the associated employment opportunities that will arise from this clean power source.
“Through education, awareness, and advocacy, we can help manage the impacts on global energy markets as transformation of the electric power system occurs, and assist people, organisations and governments to gain access to this renewable, reliable, safe, affordable power solution.”
The global microgrids market is estimated to be valued at US$30 billion in 2022, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 15 percent between 2018 and 2022, according to GlobalData.
The Australian Government allocated $50 million in its recent Budget to support feasibility studies for microgrids to help power regional and remote communities and a report by the Economics and Industry Standing Committee on the emergence and impact of microgrids and associated technologies in WA is soon due to be handed down.
In the US, microgrids are being developed in response to major grid outages caused by extreme weather both on the East Coast and in California on the back of recent wildfire-induced power outages.
Head to www.internationalmicrogrids.org for details.
MAIN Image: Terry Mohn, Chair, International Microgrid Association (Supplied.)