This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

February 20, 2002

Distributed Generation Powers Much of the Winter Olympics

The 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah, are drawing on 350 portable generators to supply 100 megawatts of power for such critical functions as broadcasting, security, timing and results operations, and information technology. Aggreko LLC has had a 107-member team installing power systems at the Salt Lake City site for the past 18 months. Although many of Aggreko's systems are providing backup power for utility-powered systems, the company's press release notes that most of the 20 Olympic venues are powered by temporary generation systems. The next stop for the team: the 2002 World Cup Games in Japan. See the Aggreko press release.

Portable generators are one example of distributed generation, the production of electricity via a large number of relatively small generators, usually located close to the electrical load. Distributed generation can meet many needs: DOE's Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), for example, is evaluating distributed generation as one means of avoiding the construction of new power lines. BPA announced last week that it will examine energy efficiency, distributed generation, and other alternatives before building new power lines. See the BPA press release.

For more information about distributed generation and other distributed energy sources, see the Distributed Energy Resources Web site on EREN.

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