Asia-Pacific Microgrid Market on ‘threshold of exponential growth’

According to the report, the market generated revenues of US$84.2 million in 2013 and Frost & Sullivan predicts that by 2020 this will rise almost tenfold to US$814.3 million, forecasting a compound annual growth rate of 38.3%.

Source: www.pv-tech.org

>” […] This growth is expected to come from activity in establishing microgrids for rural electrification in developing countries, and from commercial microgrids in the developed ones. The report cites the examples of Australia and Japan among the developed countries.

Mining operations in remote parts of Australia are one example of reliance on microgrids, powered by on-site generation. This has come traditionally from diesel generators, which are being combined with or replaced by solar-plus-storage. According to several sources the economics for this are already compelling.

Countries with a strong recent history in rural electrification referred to by Frost & Sullivan include Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia. In the example of Indonesia, the country’s utilities are aiming to bring electrification to 90% of the rural population by 2025. In total the report covered the countries of Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Australia.

However, despite this recent activity, the report highlights several barriers that are preventing the market reaching its potential. One such example is the high capital cost of installing microgrids in tandem with energy storage systems.  […]

[…] rising electricity prices in many regions would lead utility companies away from diesel and onto renewables to run their microgrids. It could also encourage “stronger governmental support through favorable regulations, funds and subsidies”, as the use of renewable energy for microgrids would require some forms of energy storage, which are still expensive to install […]

“The utilisation of renewable energy sources, either in standalone off-grid applications or in combination with local micro-grids, is therefore recognised as a potential route for rural farming communities to develop, as well as an opportunity to tackle the health issues associated with kerosene and biomass dependence. For example, the Indian Government aims to replace around 8 million existing diesel fuelled groundwater pumps, used by farmers for irrigation, with solar powered alternatives,” according to Fox. […]”<

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