Category: Smart Energy Technologies
Problem Statement: 1) The US at #2 has increased carbon emissions by +2.5% to 5.4B tons in 2018 and globally +2.9% to 37.1B tons. May 11, 2019 CO2 level reached an all-time high of 415.26ppm so we must all do our part to fight Climate Change (Global Warming) today by reducing carbon footprint one home/building at a time by switching to 100% Renewable Clean Energy (Solar Energy + Multi-Storage) in our Day-to-Day life! 2) The 1st Solar Wave in Hawaii driven by the Net Energy Metering (NEM) program was not sustainable, residential rooftop solar-PV market has declined by -84% from 16,700 permits in 2013 to <2,900 permits in 2018. 3) Lessons learned from; 1) Puerto Rico hurricane Maria, 2) California blackouts, wildfires and mudslides and 3) Hawaii volcano lava flow disaster show utilities with centralized grid, especially with above ground distribution power lines are not resilient to natural disasters that can cut-off power, locally isolating homes and communities for weeks and months costing 2,975 lives as in the case for Puerto Rico. During the 2018 California wildfire, many people described not being able to see at night to escape their homes after losing power highlighting safety issues and importance of resilience with 85 lives lost while in Hawaii homes that were not engulfed by the lava flow still lost power due to power lines destroyed by lava, were looted so security issues and again the importance of resilience 24/7.
Solution: 2nd Solar Wave sustainability requires more customer education and interaction to control Home/Building energy ecosystem to achieve Island Nano-Grid and Zero Grid-Buy Equivalence for resilience, safety, security, savings and save lives. Many homeowners achieved Zero-NEM (actually negative NEM) thanks to their oversized rooftop solar-PV systems excess daytime solar-PV generation exported back to the grid at full retail rate (~30¢/kWh) resulting in the minimum monthly Hawaiian Electric (HECO) bill of $25/month requiring no interaction between homeowner and their PV generation system. With the NEM program, the grid acts as an infinite storage battery for each solar-PV customer but this was not sustainable causing utility grid instability due to large amount of excess daytime PV generation exporting back to the grid and Duck Curve problem. NEM program ended in 2016. To achieve the same cost savings as Zero-NEM with the minimal monthly HECO bill of $25/month requires Zero Grid-Buy (ZGB) or Equivalence. The key to achieving ZGB-Equivalence is having the right data analytics for daily energy usage monitoring and by being renewable energy conservation minded with interactive assets that can be controlled to make the necessary lifestyle behavioral changes. We integrated the use of IoT home automation devices and Smart (Home/Building) Energy Management System to maximize solar PV & thermal generation, optimize electrical battery charge/discharge and hot/cold thermal storage. Using future weather forecasting smart devices, for all of 2018 we achieved Island Nano-Grid and 100% Renewable Clean energy for 336 days or 92% of the time requiring Grid-Buy for 8% or the 29 rainy/cloudy days.
John Borland– President, J.O.B. Technologies