Mission Viejo business Franchise Services invests in solar plus energy storage to drastically reduce utility bills and eliminate hefty demand charges.

ROCKLIN, Calif., June 14, 2016 — The management team at Franchise Services, Inc. in Mission Viejo wanted more choice and control over annual utility expenses. This included reducing the pain from one of the highest demand charge tariffs in the nation. So the company invested in JLM Energy’s solar plus storage smart energy management technology that will make it possible to rely on stored energy during peak times to lower electric bills.

 

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C&I customers saving money with solar+storage

Pairing energy storage with solar brings many benefits to the end user, especially those in the commercial and industrial space. Vic Shao, CEO of Green Charge Networks, said there are significant market opportunities right now for solar+storage in non-residential settings.

“Combining solar plus energy storage can bring additional revenue streams to a project including arbitrage and demand response programs,” he said. “Because most of our customers opt for our shared savings model, taking advantage of these synergies comes at essentially no additional cost. Utilities also appreciate pairing these technologies as a solution for variable solar production- more consistent flow of energy.”

 

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Solar Plus Storage Eliminates Hefty Demand Charges… and Other Quick Microgrid News

Federal tax incentives for solar plus energy storage systems are currently available for up to 30 percent of the total cost. For Mission Viejo business Franchise Services, an investment in solar plus storage will drastically reduce utility bills — and eliminate hefty demand charges.
The company, which occupies a 44,000 square foot office building and spends $120,000 a year on electricity, wanted more choice and control over annual utility expenses.

Solar plus storage technology from JLM Energy will make that possible.

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Mission Viejo business Franchise Services invests in solar plus energy storage to drastically reduce utility bills and eliminate hefty demand charges

ROCKLIN, Calif. – The management team at Franchise Services, Inc. in Mission Viejo wanted more choice and control over annual utility expenses. This included reducing the pain from one of the highest demand charge tariffs in the nation. So the company invested in JLM Energy’s solar plus storage smart energy management technology that will make it possible to rely on stored energy during peak times to lower electric bills.

Franchise Services occupies a 44,000 square foot office building in Mission Viejo and has an annual electricity expenditure of $120,000. The new commercial grade Gridz system combines two 30 kW/60 kWh battery systems with solar panels. The company qualified for California’s SGIP rebate as well as the Federal Incentive Tax Credit for energy storage systems. The $450,000 system quickly became a $290,000 system net of tax and incentives. Dan Conger, Chief Financial Officer, expects a rapid return on investment.

“We estimate that implementing solar and energy storage will cut our utility expense by 75%,” Conger said. Our calculations show the break-even point on this system is 48-months.”

Utility companies calculate electricity charges for businesses based on total kilowatt-hours consumed and the rate at which this energy is used.  The rate of energy consumption is referred to as “demand charges” and it can account for up to 50% of a monthly energy bill.

JLM Energy’s smart software, Measurz, analyzes historical energy consumption trends and then develops efficiency recommendations that include the exact combination of storage and renewable energy needed to limit demand charges. This makes it possible to rely on stored energy during peak times or feed excess energy back to the grid at a constant rate, resulting in lower bills.

JLM Energy, VP of Enterprise Sales, Nathan Newsom said, “Combining solar and energy storage without a significant loss in efficiency is the cornerstone of our Gridz technology. Energy storage is the next frontier of renewable energy and it is a win-win for businesses and utilities. The business owner saves money and the utility gets more distributed energy resources online and a customer with a more consistent rate of use over time.”

The emerging energy storage market is being driven by improved energy efficiency, the declining cost of solar and enhanced energy storage that is made possible by improved battery technology, creating a huge benefit to consumers. Federal tax incentives for solar plus energy storage systems are currently available for up to 30% of the total cost.

The Franchise Services project is the first of its kind to receive full permits in Mission Viejo and will be used by the City as the gold standard by which to qualify future projects.

About JLM Energy

JLM energy is an innovative technology company. We develop quality products that bring value to our customers. We offer a broad set of renewable energy and energy storage products. We design every aspect of our products from inception all the way to installation and service.

JLM Energy’s full portfolio of advanced energy solutions provides consumers with choice and control over their electricity expenditure. Founded in 2011 by Farid Dibachi and Kraig Clark, JLM Energy is solely funded by the two partners. ­

About Franchise Services

Franchise Services, Inc., (FSI) is a franchise management company that owns the franchise brands, Sir Speedy, PIP Printing, Signal Graphics, TeamLogic IT, MultiCopy in the Netherlands while partnering with Eastnet Print in China. Franchise Services has a 54-year history managing award-winning brands that support the small-to-medium-sized business market. The company’s worldwide reach encompasses nearly 400 locations in 12 countries. FSI’s brands have received numerous awards and recognition including the Franchise Times Top 200, Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500, Quick Printing Top 100, Printing Impressions 400, Franchise Times Fast 55, and Franchise Business Review’s Franchise 50 Satisfactions awards.

Contacts:

Ellen Howe, VP Corporate Development & Marketing, JLM Energy

Cell: 703/835-5550 ellen.howe@jlmei.com

Dan Conger, CFO, dconger@franserv.com

Denise Denton, Assistant VP,Marketing Communications, ddenton@franserv.com.

Franchise Services, Inc., 26722 Plaza, Mission Viejo, CA  92691 Tel: 949/348-5400, Fax: 949/348-5066. Website: http://www.franserv.com.

The Emerging Microgrid Market

By:  Michelle Froese

If you’re looking to invest in the energy market, you might want to consider the growing microgrid industry. At least that’s what Tesla Motors is doing. The maker of the sleek Model S electric car aspires to become a major player in the business of microgrids, and for good reason.

Recent analysis from Frost & Sullivan points to a significant spike in growth occurring from 2015 onwards with installations for microgrids increasing every year until 2020. Similar findings from Navigant Research predict the market will reach nearly $20 billion in annual microgrid-related revenue by 2020. Under a more aggressive scenario, this figure could reach even closer to $40 billion.

“Microgrids are inching their way into the mainstream, with the focus of the market shifting from technology validation to questions surrounding the most promising business models,” said Peter Asmus, principal research analyst with Navigant Research. As of 2Q 2015, the firm identified a total of 12,031 MW of microgrid capacity throughout the world, up from 4,393 MW in 2Q 2014—a near tripling of the known scope of the microgrid market.

What is a microgrid?
The U.S. Department of Energy defines a microgrid as “a group of interconnected loads and distributed energy resources within clearly defined electrical boundaries that acts as a single controllable entity with respect to the grid. A microgrid can connect and disconnect from the grid to enable it to operate in both grid-connected or island-mode.”

Basically, a microgrid is a distributed power system with the ability to self-supply, manage, and operate with or without the main grid as required. Microgrids do so through the use of a master controller that acts as the “brain” of the system, collecting data from connected energy sources while determining how to best control and operate that energy.

Through this brainpower, microgrids have the ability to improve power quality by reducing grid imbalances and providing a reliable supply of energy. They can also help solve intermittency issues commonly associated with renewable sources such as wind and solar power. Microgrids can serve as a back-up power source or bolster the main power grid during periods of heavy demand.

MicrogridModel_ABB

In recognition of the growing microgrid market, the U.S. Department of Energy has begun funding several grants to related projects. One of those grants went to utility provider ComED just last fall. They received a $1.2 million grant to build a first-of-its-kind master controller that could drive the operation of a cluster of microgrids, which connects multiple networks. ComED assembled a group of science and technology partners for the project, including Alstom Grid, S&C Electric, Schneider Electric, the University of Denver, and others. (Note: A total of seven projects received an award for approximately $1.2 million. Learn more here.)

“There is no doubt that microgrids will be core components of the future integrated grids and extensive research and development efforts will be undertaken in upcoming years,” said Amin Khodaei, Ph.D., from the University of Denver, in a related press statement. “The truly remarkable and distinguishing feature of this project is that it is initiated and will be led by a utility company.”

Utilities aren’t commonly known for their openness or acceptance of outside power sources, particularly ones that can work independently off the main grid. However, ComEd’s community-based microgrids have the potential to provide benefits to a city through improved reliability and enhanced resiliency in response to unexpected disasters or severe weather-related events.

A surge of serious weather events have occurred over the last few years, leading to more grid outages that could have been prevented with microgrids in place. In fact, the Village of Potsdam in northern New York, which is no stranger to harsh weather and ice storms that have damaged utility lines in the past, will serve as test grounds for an Enhanced Microgrid Control System (eMCS). This system is currently under development by General Electric (GE) and several partners, including the National Grid, with the aid of a $1.2 million grant from the DOE’s Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability (OE), $381,000 from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and an additional $300,000 from GE.

The purpose of this advanced microgrid system is to provide resilient, high-quality power to critical loads during power disruptions. The system is designed to work even if disconnected from the main power station for as long as two weeks.

“Together, GE’s control system and the underground microgrid envisioned for the Potsdam community, could serve as a model for towns and cities across the country that are susceptible to weather disasters and blackouts,” said Sumit Bose, principal investigator on the project and microgrid technology leader at GE Global Research.

microgrid_image2

Remote power
The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that by 2020, developing countries will need to double their electrical power output.

“All told, the developing nations will represent 80% of total growth in energy production and consumption by the 2035,” this according to Navigant Research. “One could safely assume that the majority of these new power supplies will be produced and distributed via remote microgrids and other related forms of distributed energy resources.”

To meet this demand, companies are taking action and joining forces. Vestas’ Wind for Prosperity initiative, for instance, is a commercially based business model designed to bring affordable and reliable wind-generated electricity systems to rural populations in developing countries. One way they are doing so is by partnering with ABB, a power and automation supplier, to provide off-grid electricity to communities in Africa. Vestas is supplying re-furbished wind turbines and ABB is offering their microgrid power-stabilization solutions to create hybrid-generation systems that are well suited to operate in remote locations with limited infrastructure.

Canadian company Tugliq Energy has retained Hatch, a technical engineering and consulting firm, to engineer a microgrid control system for its wind and diesel energy storage demonstration project at a remote Arctic mine site in northern Québec. The five-year pilot project, which began in 2014, is testing wind-power integration on an islanded microgrid under severe Arctic climate conditions.

This hybrid system integrates renewable power and fossil fuel generation with the intent of maintaining grid stability and minimizing energy losses from wind curtailment (when the wind power supply is greater than the load). The pilot project is also testing three different storage technologies, including lithium-ion batteries, hydrogen, and flywheel storage. Flywheel devices store kinetic energy from the high-speed rotator.

micorgrid_image3

System size
SolarCity, a company that defines itself as America’s largest solar-power provider, is one of the first to incorporate Tesla’s lithium-ion battery technology. The result is that SolarCity is now able to configure and offer their solar system as a stand-alone, off-grid power supply.

According to the company website: “The combination of solar-power generation and battery storage will make the utility grid safer and less susceptible to service interruptions, and will also lower the cost to expand and maintain the grid.”

Initial plans are to present these off-grid systems to eligible customers in Hawaii who are otherwise prevented from using solar power.

The company is also expanding into larger community services. Because a microgrid can aggregate power production and demand from more than one source, it can serve multiple sectors. But when does a microgrid become a macrogrid? For some, even the community-scale system SolarCity offers stretches the limit of the term “micro.”

At its core is the ability of a microgrid to separate and isolate itself from the main grid (known as “islanding”), but for some communities especially in remote locations, the microgrid is the primary grid.

For California’s Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria, their new hybrid energy system currently under construction is the only system of its kind combining renewables with advanced energy storage. Working with JLM Energy, the system will include a 30-kW microgrid supported by a 100-kW PV solar system and 20 Zefr wind turbines.

The Tribe currently has a single 10-kW wind turbine that has provided power for a component of their wastewater treatment facility for a number of years. Developing more sustainable onsite power to reduce reliance on the main grid allows the Tribe more self-sufficiency, which is a significant component of their Tribal Sovereignty.

“A large part of sovereignty is independence and self-sufficiency,” explained Barry Brenard, Bear River Tribal Council Member At Large. “Anything that makes us more independent strengthens our sovereignty and bring us closer to our traditional values.”

The DOE released a study earlier this spring that echoed the self-sufficiency of microgrid demonstrations, providing evidence that deployments tested offered higher reliability and power quality than even utility-power systems.

So microgrid or macrogrid, what does size really matter when an opportunity arises to deliver more affordable and reliable electricity?

Source:  Windpower Engineering

Wind/solar system installed on Rohnerville Rancheria

LOLETA >> Two rows of solar panels installed on a hillside next to Singley Road are now supplying power to the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria’s Tish Non Community Center. The solar panels are one part of a renewable energy system developed by Rocklin, CA-based JLM Energy, and the first Tribal renewable microgrid system in California.

The next step in this unique project is to install wind turbines, which will be mounted on the back row of the solar panels. “These are micro-turbines,” said Matthew Mattson, executive director of Tribal Operations for Bear River, “that are designed for urban applications.” He said the turbines are low noise, with blades less than three feet long.

In all, 20 turbines will be installed, with the goal of having the wind-related portion of the alternative energy project completed sometime in October.

The JLM Energy Gridz system will provide a 30-kilowatt microgrid, which is supported by a 100-kilowatt photovoltaic solar system and several wind turbines to provide an integrated approach to sustainable energy. This system is unique in that is combines a microgrid with wind and solar energy in an integrated system.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first renewable, hybrid microgrid installed by a California tribe,” said Edwin Smith, Tribal Council member and director of Environment and Natural Resources. “Bear River is thinking globally and acting locally,” he said.

The energy system will support the Community Center’s operations during a power outage, and will reduce energy use overall by shaving peak demand charges.

The tribe currently has a single ten watt wind turbine that has been generating power for a component of the Tribal wastewater treatment infrastructure for more than five years.

“Our experience with the single wind turbine has been positive,” said Edwin Smith, Tribal Council Member and Director of Environment and Natural Resources. “We know it works,” he added. “The technology has improved for wind and solar, and it is the right thing to do for the environment. It’s a sound economic decision in the long run,” Smith said, “but it is also a long term investment in our planet.”

“The investment in the installation pencils out to a ten year payback when analyzing reduced power costs for the Tish Non Community Center,” said Dakota McGinnis, Vice Chairman and Economic Development Director.

The project is part of a sustained effort by the Bear River Tribe to diversify economically, reduce its carbon footprint and become more self-sufficient as a community. It is the first tribal renewable microgrid system in California.

Source:  Redwood Times

Enterprise Electric Vehicle Charging Stations Using PV & Energy Storage

Environmentally responsible companies provide their employees the opportunity to charge their electric vehicles while at work. This is a significant step for an employer to show their commitment to their employees and to the environment. The resulting increase in electrical bills could quickly become a financial burden for enterprise. Sound financial steps are now available to mitigate these expenses while further demonstrating the employer’s commitment to the environment.

By using renewable energy in conjunction with advanced energy storage technology, an intelligent, cost effective and environmentally friendly solution is provided.

As electric vehicles gain in popularity, many electric vehicle owners still struggle with transitioning from the convenience of making a quick stop at a gas station to having to charge their electric vehicles at a stationary charger that renders the vehicle unusable during charging. Daytime charging, while at work, is a solution to convenient charging. However, the impact of daytime charging on a facility’s utility bill and overall infrastructure is significant. In particular, charging during on-peak hours, when the utility grid is most impacted, is an expensive proposition for electric vehicle owners and their employers.

 

California Tribe Installs First Renewable Hybrid Microgrid

ROCKLIN, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria is installing the first California Tribal renewable microgrid system this summer in Loleta, California. The Bear River Band’s new energy system is the only system of its kind combining wind energy, solar energy, and advanced energy storage.

“Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria is proud to partner with JLM Energy in establishing a renewable energy microgrid for the The Tish Non Community Center. This important green energy project demonstrates our respect for natural resources, self-reliance and Tribal Sovereignty.”

Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria has a long-term investment in sustainability. JLM Energy’s solution is really unique in that it brings solar, wind and energy storage together. We can optimize all our efforts for energy self-reliance. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first renewable hybrid microgrid installed by a California Tribe. Bear River is thinking global and acting local by choosing JLM Energy, a California firm, and using green energy.”— Mr. Edwin Smith, Tribal Council Member and Director of Environment and Natural Resources

Working with JLM Energy, the Tish Non Community Center on the Bear River Rancheria, will install an advanced energy storage system, complemented by onsite renewable energy generation. JLM’s Gridz system will provide a 30kW microgrid. The system will seamlessly support the building’s operations during a power outage. In addition, the system actively works to reduce demand charges. The Gridz microgrid solution is supported by a 100kW photovoltaic solar system and twenty of JLM’s Zefr wind turbines, providing an integrated approach to sustainable energy.

Gridz will enable the Tish Non Tribe to reduce the community center’s energy use by shaving peak demand charges. JLM’s cloud-based energy management software, Measurz, monitors loads in real-time for efficiency and energy optimization. “Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria is proud to partner with JLM Energy in establishing a renewable energy microgrid for the The Tish Non Community Center. This important green energy project demonstrates our respect for natural resources, self-reliance and Tribal Sovereignty.”— Mr. Barry Brenard, Tribal Council Member

The JLM-designed system is unique in that it combines a microgrid with wind and solar energy in an integrated system. This hybrid system provides peak demand energy reduction at the community center, offsets energy expenses and assists the Tish Non Tribe in gaining energy independence and sustainable self-reliance.

About Bear River Band, Rohnerville Rancheria

The vision of the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria is shaping a secure healthy future by responsibly exercising sovereignty, investing in our people, refining and evolving as a tribal organization, preserving and revitalizing our culture while serving the best interests of all people.

The mission of Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria is to promote balance between quality of life, self sufficiency, sustainability and cultural awareness for Bear River.

About JLM Energy Inc.

JLM Energy manufactures a portfolio of products that deliver scalable renewable energy and energy storage solutions.

Declare your energy independence.

Learn more at www.JLMEI.com