Atlantic City microgrid project advances to power facilities in emergencies

A plan to establish a local power grid to serve the city as a backup in emergencies took another step forward.

The Board of Public Utilities formally announced $175,000 in funding for a feasibility study to bring the so-called “microgrid” energy system that would keep facilities operational in major storms. The local grid would be one of 13 projects the BPU is funding statewide with $2 million.

The microgrid project is meant to create an energy system that would keep facilities open in storms such as Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The grant money provides the resources to conduct a feasibility study and move to the next phase of the project proposal.

The Atlantic City project would include installing an additional combined heat and power system at the Midtown Thermal Control Center, located at Atlantic and Ohio avenues. The center currently provides cooled water and steam to customers for cooling and heating.

Frank DiCola, the CEO of DCO Energy, which powers the center, said at the announcement he is confident the program would succeed in the city.

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