California regulators approve PG&E, Energy Vault green hydrogen and battery microgrid

California utilities have been deploying proactive power outages — called public safety power shutoffs — during weather conditions that increase the risk that their infrastructure might cause wildfires. From 2013 through 2019, the state’s three large investor-owned utilities companies deployed 33 such outages, according to the CPUC. 

This microgrid’s use of green hydrogen fuel cells and batteries marks a departure from PG&E’s earlier practice of using diesel generators for backup power during outages. California regulators directed PG&E to begin transitioning to cleaner sources of backup power in 2021, by procuring a minimum of one clean substation microgrid project that could be used during wildfire-related outages...

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