Guidehouse Insights report finds the commercial and industrial microgrid segment to be the fastest-growing worldwide

Declining costs make reliance on renewables more attractive, but legacy infrastructure integration challenges remain

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Colorado — A new report from Guidehouse Insights examines the public policy and technology drivers accelerating the adoption of commercial and industrial (C&I) microgrids.

The report provides global forecasts for microgrid subsegments on both a capacity and implementation spending basis through 2030.

Historically, the C&I microgrid segment has lagged behind other microgrid market segments, primarily because of the lack of a clear value proposition based on the ROI for microgrids. In the last decade, however, it has emerged as the fastest-growing microgrid market worldwide. According to a new report from Guidehouse Insights, the C&I microgrid market is evolving into one of the most innovative microgrid markets, as technology advances make the transition from fossil fuel to renewables increasingly cost-effective.

“The cost of solar PV continues to decline over time, which in turn, makes microgrids more attractive for C&I customers, as their primary focus is on cost reductions,” says Peter Asmus, research director with Guidehouse Insights. “Furthermore, cost-competitive energy storage, which most commonly comes in the form of batteries, is the key hardware technology advancement that is expected to enable a more attractive microgrid value proposition for C&I microgrids.”

However, the C&I microgrid segment also faces hurdles. Many C&I customers, such as data centers, first focus on what they deem practical solutions to their reliability concerns, such as backup diesel generators and redundant utility feeds. Connecting newer infrastructure (e.g., solar PV and advanced batteries) with older existing infrastructure can present challenges.

The report, Commercial and Industrial Microgrids, forecasts four C&I microgrid subsegments (grid-tied commercial, grid-tied industrial, remote commercial, and remote industrial) on both a capacity and implementation spending basis. It also features profiles of leading microgrid vendors focusing on the C&I market.

The report reviews public policy and technology drivers accelerating adoption of C&I microgrids, including trends toward modular systems and energy as a service (EaaS) offers. The forecast includes all major global regions and extends through 2030.

An executive summary of the report is available for free download here.

Derick Lila
Derick is a Clark University graduate—and Fulbright alumni with a Master's Degree in Environmental Science, and Policy. He has over a decade of solar industry research, marketing, and content strategy experience.

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