The Sonoma County Junior College District partnered with the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE) and other key agencies to develop a microgrid on the Santa Rosa Junior College campus to reduce campus greenhouse gas emissions, increase electricity reliability and lower the college’s energy costs.
With funding from the California Energy Commission, CSE evaluated, tested and verifyied three types of distributed energy resource (DER) elements – photovoltaic (PV) generation, energy storage, and load reduction and control systems – all managed by a single microgrid controller. The new equipment was integrated with existing solar PV installations as well as an existing battery.
The 100+ acre campus is located in a region of Northern California that has been devastated by wildfires in recent years. The demonstration project, which ran from 2019 to 2023, is part of the college’s strategy to build resilience to planned and unplanned power outages and reduce greenhouse gas emissions contributing to climate change.
“We rely on CSE’s project management and grant management expertise as we work to increase electricity reliability, reduce peak energy demand, and lead by example to demonstrate the business case for a flexible campus microgrid. CSE's team of energy experts has allowed the college to reduce the significant risk of innovative technology and help deliver a first-of-its-kind project that will benefit the state of California and the community it serves,” David Liebman, Energy and Sustainability Manager, Santa Rosa Junior College