CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Nov. 10, 2022) – Duke Energy has been awarded a $22 million utility energy service contract (UESC) by Marine Corps Base (MCB) Camp Lejeune for the design and construction of a microgrid at the military base.

The innovative microgrid solution includes upgraded electrical infrastructure, 5 megawatts (MW) of on-site natural gas-fired generation, a 5.4-MW battery energy storage system, integration of an existing solar photovoltaic system, and a microgrid controller to provide integrated demand management, black start and islanding capability.

“We’re excited to bring additional energy reliability and resiliency to Camp Lejeune,” said Melisa Johns, vice president, Distributed Energy Solutions at Duke Energy. “This project offers a number of innovative and integrated solutions that will lead to more efficient energy use and significant cost savings to Camp Lejeune.”

The award leverages Energy Resilience Conservation Investment Program (ERCIP) funding to install the microgrid at Camp Johnson – an education and training area located within Camp Lejeune.

“The Marine Corps is investing in state-of-the-art infrastructure to position installations to prevent, recover and survive a prolonged loss of electrical service from weather – and climate-related events,” explained Marine Corps Installations Command Public Works Director Walter Ludwig. “This UESC award is a major step toward furthering the reliability, resilience and efficiency of Camp Lejeune’s electrical infrastructure and on-site generation capabilities.”

An artist’s rendering of Duke Energy’s planned microgrid installation at Camp Lejeune. Courtesy: Brandon Bridges

While many installations have backup generators, microgrids provide a more sophisticated generation source. Microgrids enable operators to manage the power load and everything plugged into the gr id, while redirecting power to critical missions that require an uninterruptible energy supply during an unplanned power outage.

Located in Onslow County, N.C., Camp Lejeune is home to the largest concentration of Marines in the Marine Corps. It makes up nearly 20% of the Marine Corps’ installation energy consumption. In addition to multiple other energy efficiency projects, Duke Energy also completed a 13-MW solar facility at Camp Lejeune in 2015. This project will further reduce energy demand and consumption, greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs at the installation by upgrading solar photovoltaic system inverters and installing lighting upgrades.

This UESC project is part of Duke Energy’s unregulated federal business. As a Department of Energy certified Energy Services Company (ESCO), Duke Energy’s ESCO team develops and delivers solutions that strengthen infrastructure reliability, operational resilience and energy cost performance for federal customers.