Distributed Renewable Energy

K.K. DuVivier, University of Denver


Chapter 19 covers “distributed generation” or “DG,” the generation and use of energy either onsite or within only the lower voltage distribution-level grid infrastructure — including photovoltaic solar, battery storage, and thermal resources such as solar thermal, heat-pumps, and district heating. Distributed generation (DG) is probably the energy source most impacted by different levels of government and non-governmental actors. This makes DG vulnerable to policy choices, and consequently the recommendations for this chapter are many. However, DG is also most immediate to consumers, especially with new technologies or rate structures that give them feedback about their own individual generation and consumption patterns. This, along with exciting new leaps in DG technologies, suggest there are opportunities for DG to play an increasing role in significantly decarbonizing U.S. energy.