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New York state on course to meet aggressive energy storage goals

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Thu, Apr 2nd 2020 07:00 am

The Department of Public Service on Wednesday issued the first “State of Storage” annual report announcing progress in reaching New York’s statewide energy storage goal of 3,000 megawatts (MW) by 2030, with an interim objective of deploying 1,500 MW by 2025.

A press release read, “Energy storage enhances the efficiency of the electric grid through many different applications such as demand charge management, demand response, distribution system local reliability, firming large-scale intermittent renewables, and wholesale market installed capacity and ancillary services, and supports New York’s ‘Green New Deal,’ the most aggressive climate change program in the nation, which puts the state on a path to economywide carbon neutrality.”

“Energy storage is a smart clean way to build flexibility into the grid and advance Gov. Cuomo’s ambitious clean energy goals,” said Department CEO John B. Rhodes. “Today’s report is terrific news in that it highlights that we are on track toward meeting the country's largest energy storage target.”

Total deployed or awarded/contracted projects at the end of 2019 totals 706 MW in capacity, or about 47% of the 2025 target of 1,500 MW, and 24% of the 2030 target of 3,000 MW. The number of energy storage projects in various interconnection queues, which reflects some of these reported projects as well as potential projects in the pipeline, also indicates robust activity in the industry. Approximately 9,779 MW of energy storage projects are presently in various interconnection queues in New York.

The report is in response to directives in the Public Service Law §74 and from the Public Service Commission’s Dec. 13, 2018, order that established the statewide energy storage goals. In this initial energy storage order, the commission adopted a suite of energy storage deployment policies and actions to achieve its goals.

The energy storage report highlights that the portfolio of programs and actions approved by the commission in its energy storage order have been effective to-date in building a market for the development and installation of qualified energy storage systems in New York.

The press release added, “The declining costs of the technology, coupled with favorable compensation options established by the commission, is making energy storage an increasingly attractive option to augment the existing pipeline of utility-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) projects being developed in the state. Projects that combine energy storage with solar PV and use a community distributed generation (CDG) configuration, reported installed costs as low as $300-$400 per kilowatt hour (kWh) in 2019. Energy storage’s eligibility for value of distributed energy resource (VDER) compensation, and recent changes to that methodology by the commission that have allowed projects to obtain easier financing, have also contributed to the healthy growth in energy storage development in New York. VDER is now the most common compensation mechanism chosen by developers and coupling energy storage with a renewable generator allows developers to maximize this compensation in many cases.”

Cuomo's “Green New Deal” is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, putting the state on a path to being entirely carbon-neutral across all sectors of the economy and establishing a goal to achieve a zero-carbon emissions electricity sector by 2040, faster than any other state.

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