Navigating Grid Reliability and the Role of Microgrids in Texas

April 5, 2024

As Texas faced repeated warnings and failures, especially during the peak season from June to August, it became evident: Texas’s electric reliability is no mere guarantee. The issues we confront with our grid are substantial and persistent.

With a rapidly growing Texas population, the demands on the grid are intensifying. Adding to the strain, coal-fired power plants and even gas plants are giving way to wind and solar sources without reliable power generation as backup. Senate Bill 3, enacted after the February freeze of 2021, ushered in a new era of preparedness, necessitating auxiliary generators for all counties and more stringent compliance measures. Today, the onus of power reliability no longer lies with grid operators – consumers bear a share of the responsibility as well.

However, checking regulatory boxes is just the start. The deeper problem remains how to ensure the reliability of the power system, especially with an EPA target to decarbonize the power industry, our ever-growing industrial base and increasing population.

The significant challenge is that our increasing power needs are being supplied almost exclusively from  wind and solar, which, while perhaps essential for a sustainable future, puts a  strain on grid reliability due to their intermittent nature. The increasing electrification of, well, everything, further complicates the equation.

In these testing times, two critical tools emerge to help maintain grid equilibrium: demand response (removing load from the grid) and frequency response (adding power to the grid).

Microgrids are on-site power systems that are grid and plant interconnected and can be remotely managed to determine if they should be interconnected with the grid or not at any given time. Not only do they offer commercial entities the ability to have reliable  power, but they also act as a tool to manage  the very demanding frequency of the grid. The microgrid creates optionality that has benefits to help keep the overall grid in balance, provides for reliability and is a revenue generating asset, so its existence makes business sense for investors.

Regulators striving to boost grid reliability will find that load and generation will both show up when price signals are given and the microgrid will be a part of delivering both of them to the market.

In essence, it is a win-win: the microgrid enhances resiliency for the grid and ensures reliability.

At Acclaim Energy, our primary focus is to assist organizations in optimizing their energy portfolio, mitigating risks, and securing the overall best energy  budget. To delve deeper into how we can aid your energy strategy, reach out to us at