A recent report has shown that remote microgrids are likely to play a crucial role in the surging appetite for power as the developing world requires more and more energy with the expected increases in population and raise in living standards among the chronically poor.
The demand for energy in the developing world — specifically, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America — is expected to grow in tandem with projected increases in human population and rising living standards among the chronically poor. In particular, the demand for electricity is growing much more rapidly in these burgeoning economies than the rate of expansion of conventional electricity grids in the major industrialised world.
Hence the report from Pike Research, which found that remote microgrids are especially suited to help meet this surge for electricity, and they can do so without increasing the carbon emissions.
According to Pike Research, “the global remote microgrid market will expand from 349 megawatts (MW) of generation capacity in 2011 to over 1.1 gigawatts (GW) by 2017, the cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts, translating into total projected revenue for the sector of more than $10.2 billion by 2017.”
“A widening recognition of the contribution renewable energy makes to rural development, lower health costs (linked to air pollution), energy independence, and climate change mitigation is shifting renewable energy from the fringe to the mainstream of sustainable economics,” says senior analyst Peter Asmus. “Remote microgrids can serve as the anchors of new, appropriate scale infrastructure, a shift to smarter ways to deliver humanitarian services to the poor.”
Funnily enough, despite remote microgrids being the most commercially advanced of the microgrid sectors, they are still relatively unknown to investors and vendors. Nevertheless, that is changing, as large companies who are involved in a wide variety of microgrid markets focus their attention on remote microgrid sector, among them General Electric.