The Wall Street Journal is reporting that utilities are worried because an increasing number of large corporations are unplugging their operations from the electric grid. Instead in a development that’s good news for alternate energy sources like low energy nuclear reaction (LENR), large companies are beginning to generate their own electricity.
More and more large companies are generating their own power because of costs and the perceived unreliability of the grid. Even some electric company executives are worried about the trend. Nick Akins the CEO at American Electric Power Company in Ohio told the Journal he’s scared that he’ll become the “caretaker of a museum.”
One of the leaders in this trend is Kroger Inc. (which owns the Krogers, Ralph’s, King Soopers and Food4Less grocery chains). Kroger spent $150 million to install a biogas system at a plant in Compton, Calif., that turns food waste into methane gas for power.
Other companies moving away from the grid include Wal-Mart, Apple, Verizon, Costco, Google, Kohhl’s, Macy’s BMC, IKEA, Johnson & Johnson, Staples, Campbell Soup and even Walgreen drugs. Wal-Mart wants to produce 20% of its own electricity by 2020. The trend means there will be a huge market for LENR devices like Rossi’s ecat, Brillouin’s Boiler, Defkalion’s Hyperion, and the Celani cell if they reach the market. The demand is certainly there.
Verizon has spent $100 million on fuel cells and solar panels for 19 data centers in seven states. Apple has even built a data center in North Carolina that reportedly gets no power from the grid. So far the big winners are fuel cell makers such as Bloom Energy and Clear Edge but LENR companies could play a role. In addition to fuel cells some companies are turning to small natural gas turbines and natural gas fired generators.
The loser could be average people who pay electric bills. Some regulators are afraid that fewer corporate customers will force utilities to raise rates on home owners and small business in order to pay for the cost of the grid.
It looks like the power grid might be on the way out whether we like it or not. That means new solutions like LENR are more important than ever – particularly if we want affordable and reliable sources of electricity.