Energy Storage

N.Y. PSC OKs utility plan for storage exports to distribution systems

The New York Public Service Commission on Feb. 22 issued an order signing off on a plan filed by investor-owned Consolidated Edison Company of New York to expand the circumstances under which electric energy storage systems will be able to export to the utility’s distribution systems.

Con Edison initially made the proposal through tariff amendments filed in July 2017 (Case No. 17-E-0458).

The PSC “approved a first-ever plan that will allow Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. to significantly expand the use of battery storage systems in its service territory,” the commission said in a news release. The decision “is part of an overall effort to expand battery storage to more effectively harness and utilize the renewable energy being produced,” the commission said.

“It will now be much more straight forward for owners of private energy storage systems to export the electricity they produce to Con Edison’s electric distribution systems,” fulfilling another component of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy, said PSC Chair John Rhodes.

The PSC said its order approves the company’s tariff amendments related to electric energy storage systems, with clarifying modifications.

“The tariff amendments significantly increase energy storage technologies’ ability to export power to Con Edison’s primary and secondary voltage distribution systems while maintaining power quality and safe and reliable operations,” the commission said.

The PSC expects that the tariff changes are only the first step toward encouraging deeper penetration of energy storage technologies in Con Edison's service territory and that further developments to support these technologies will be considered in future phases.

Cuomo recently launched storage initiative

Cuomo recently launched an initiative to deploy 1,500 megawatts of energy storage by 2025. The PSC said the 1,500 MW commitment represents the largest such commitment per capita by any state.

To implement the directive, PSC and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority staff are working to complete an Energy Storage Roadmap that will identify the means to achieving the governor’s energy storage target, as well as provide analysis to support the adoption of a 2030 goal by the commission as required by energy storage legislation that Cuomo signed in December.

Stakeholders will have the opportunity to provide public comments when commission staff issues its “Energy Storage Roadmap” for public comment, which is anticipated in the second quarter.

The PSC said that this white paper will present the range of actions the state can facilitate, including those that require commission action, along with associated costs and benefits. Once the white paper is released for public comment, a technical conference or conferences will also be held. After all comments are considered, it will be put before the PSC for final review and determination.

The PSC noted that Cuomo has also proposed committing at least $200 million from NY Green Bank for storage-related investments to help drive down costs and to strategically deploy energy storage to where the grid needs it most.

Also, the governor is directing NYSERDA to invest at least $60 million through storage pilots and activities to reduce barriers to deploying energy storage, including permitting, customer acquisition, interconnection and financing costs.

Con Edison unit, Tesla partner on project

In an effort that will involve Tesla as a partner, a Consolidated Edison utility is planning a battery storage demonstration project that aims to show how storage can provide multiple benefits.

Under the $5.6 million proposal that is part of Reforming the Energy Vision, Orange & Rockland will team up with Tesla, an electric vehicle maker and energy storage system provider, to test the idea that battery storage can provide a range of services with costs and benefits shared by multiple stakeholders, according to a Feb. 6 filing made by O&R with the PSC.