Distributed Energy Markets & volume analysis for Isolated Communities:
Isolated communities require new energy sources for economic development. They need to increase generation efficiency, reduce their dependence on fossil fuels, and find cleaner sources of electricity. This includes islands in the South Pacific, Caribbean, Mediterranean and remote communities in Alaska, Canada, South America, and Europe. In 2009, the global number of people whom were completely without access to electricity was 1.4 billion or 20% of the world’s population. In 2010, there were 170 island communities with populations over 100,000. An estimated 30% of those communities depend on government subsidies for electricity production. In these island communities, electricity cost ranged from .18 - .47 cents per KWh, with a majority on the higher end, and almost entirely generated by the burning of fossil fuels.
One of the reasons for high electric costs in those communities that do have access to electricity, is the lack of power distribution and out-dated infrastructure. This makes it hard to take advantage of mass production even from coal, natural gas, and large nuclear plants. These communities rely on regional cooperative plants burning heavy oil, diesel, and natural gas. Diesel and heavy oil fueled electricity generation is very expensive due to transportation and market price fluctuations for fuel. There’s also a desire to improve health and environmental quality and a need to reduce, control, and minimize the usage of fresh water, especially in arid and island regions that have a fixed supply of this precious resource. In traditional fossil fuels, the processes and safety procedures that ensure air and water quality add even more to the costs for local communities (not to mention health impacts and depletion of natural resources). In areas far from the generation site, there are additional human labor costs.