Last updated 3/6/2023 at 10:23am
In discussions with Anthony Wagner, MPA, communications manager of San Diego Gas & Electric, regarding the change of electricity providers to San Diego Community Power (SDCP) from SDG&E, the Borrego Sun expressed concern that the local microgrid remains a priority.
“The Borrego microgrid is one of a kind in the state, and as such will continue to be extremely important to us,” Wagner said, adding, “We are constantly making improvements and evolving the technology.”
Wagner explained that the short power outages from February 9-17, 2023, were about mechanical repairs to the grid.
“I hope people are patient with us.
“You have to remember there’s only one transmission line servicing Borrego’s microgrid, and with only one line, there are many problems occurring throughout the line. Keeping the grid’s electricity moving through that one transmission line is an ongoing job.
“Plus, there are local problems such as when the citrus growers turn their irrigation pumps on. The powerful release of those pumps often impacts the grid. In fact, when we are working on it, we ask the growers to refrain from irrigating.
“We are proud of the grid and opportunity to serve Borrego Springs and advance this technology as a prototype that will be valuable elsewhere,” Wagner explained.
Asked about the change of power providers, he said,” SDG&E is working in cooperation with SDCP, adding that, “Competition is good for the consumers.”.
As for the storm’s destruction, and power outage, he pointed out there were more than 11 poles down or broken in the Borrego-north county area, plus downed poles and broken transmission lines in the Salton Sea area.
“Our guys worked very hard under difficult weather conditions to get back online and power moving, we are extremely proud of the crews.