Case Study and Video: Blue Lake Rancheria Microgrid


Using a $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission (CEC)’s Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC), the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe is working to build a low-carbon community microgrid to power the entire 100-acre reservation, including government offices, casino, hotel and critical Red Cross safety shelter-in-place facilities. Check out Microgrid Knowledge‘s coverage of the project here; some highlighted details are shared below.

For a short video interviewing the Tribe’s Energy Director on how the microgrid controls will allow cost and energy savings through efficiency and demand response, visit this page on Siemens’s website.

Microgrid Project At-A-Glance

  • Funded in part through a $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission’s Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC)
  • Largest solar array in Humboldt County, California
  • Powered by a 0.5 MW solar photovoltaic installation, 950 kWh battery storage system, biomass fuel cell system and diesel generators
  • Energy resources managed and controlled with “operator-free” Siemens Spectrum Power Microgrid Management System (SP MGMS) software
  • Utility grade SCADA software platform ensure interoperability with other load control systems and microgrid applications
  • Planned to be installed and operational by fall 2016

Microgrid Benefits

  • High-quality, reliable power without fear of outages or power interruption
  • Ability to operate independently of the power grid in coordination with local utility PG&E
  • Increased public safety in emergency situations
  • Year-round renewable energy to use — and technology that can store it.
  • Estimated to reduce 150 tons of carbon per year

Read more on Microgrid Knowledge here. For more on microgrids, click here. For more on the energy efficiency and renewables actions Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe is taking, click here for a case study of their activities from

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