IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - 22

if private companies are willing to take
a chance and invest in the extraordinary
potential of these countries, there is no
telling what that market might become.
Few realize that business innovation and
appropriate modeling is key, and only
then can renewables in these countries
become a long-term solution. Several
case studies are presented as examples
of how renewable energy can bring
small but significant changes to rural
communities. they demonstrate how
the latest innovations and affordable
rural electrification solutions are able
to serve the market needs by offering
a competitive range of products with
breakeven periods that at times may be
fewer than two years.
In addition, we wanted to illustrate in
depth the challenges in providing access
to electricity to isolated communities,
which often only have access to simple
and inexpensive local energy sources,

such as biomass for cooking and kerosene lamps or candles for lighting. Some
more sophisticated locations generate
electricity using fossil fuel-based generators, a mature, simple, and reliable
technology but often with high operating costs, environmental impacts, and
complex fuel logistics.
We first asked Mariano Arriaga,
Claudio A. Cañizares, and Mehrdad
Kazerani to assess the challenges of
approximately 200,000 people who
live in 280 remote, isolated communities across Canada, not connected to
the north American electric grid and
solely generate electricity using fossil
fuels, often with very high costs, needing important government subsidies.
the energy-related challenges of these
communities encompass economic,
technical, social, and environmental issues that need to be collectively analyzed. the article describes efforts from

different stakeholders to address some
of the issues, with pilot projects developed to further understand and assess the
challenges, including hydro-hydrogen
storage, wind diesel systems, and photovoltaic diesel systems, among others. Indeed, the perception of diesel fuel being
the sole alternative for such communities
is slowly changing, but there are still significant challenges to change the existing
energy mix to include considerable contributions from renewable sources.
Another view of access by isolated
communities is provided by Guillermo
Jiménez-estévez, rodrigo Palma-Behnke,
diego Ortiz-Villalba, Oscar núñez, and
Carlos Silva Montes, who discuss different ways of achieving community
engagement with a microgrid system to
promote the long-term sustainability of
power supply systems for isolated locations. these concepts and applications
foster community participation in the

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014

IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover1
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover2
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IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover3
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover4
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