It may be arduous to maintain up with the regular drumbeat of vitality storage coverage updates emanating from the Northeast, and New York particularly, however final week’s announcement of $55 million allotted for Lengthy Island deserves a re-assessment.
The specifics of the motivation — $250 per kilowatt-hour for residential storage or industrial programs as much as 5 megawatts — parallel related alternatives supplied to prospects elsewhere in New York as a part of a $280 million bundle launched in April. The sooner tranche was funded by a programs profit cost that Lengthy Islanders do not pay; as a substitute, their storage are coming from the Regional Greenhouse Fuel Initiative.
In addition to a separate funding construction, Lengthy Island’s geography and grid infrastructure make it a precious take a look at case for vitality storage, as a part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s bold decarbonization program.
“Lengthy Island strikes me as among the best and earliest areas to achieve a very carbon-free grid, given its photo voltaic, storage and offshore wind capabilities,” mentioned Jason Doling, assistant director for distributed vitality sources on the New York State Vitality Analysis and Improvement Company.
NYSERDA hopes to disburse the storage funds within the subsequent three to 5 years, with the aim of building an area installer base and a sustainable and rising market by the top of that interval.
Island limits create storage alternatives
The water separating Lengthy Island from the mainland imposes apparent constraints on delivering electrical energy to a inhabitants that totaled 7.5 million as of the final census. Summer time tourism season brings further stress, usually forcing the Lengthy Island Energy Authority, which owns the grid infrastructure, to truck in transportable diesel mills to satisfy demand.
Storage can defer distribution upgrades, guaranteeing energy provide throughout peak hours instead of extra capital-intensive investments. LIPA examined out this imaginative and prescient when it powered up a 5-megawatt/40-megawatt-hour battery final summer season at a substation in East Hampton.
Individually, Cuomo’s administration has developed extra stringent nitrogen oxide emissions laws to focus on the worst-polluting peaker vegetation. Crops have till mid-2020 to come back into compliance. Emissions reductions are doable by changing fossil-fueled mills with storage, or including storage to hybridize the plant.
A few of Lengthy Island’s peakers function for brief sufficient stints that batteries might substitute them outright, Doling mentioned. About 200 megawatts of storage might fulfill that job, he mentioned. A broader inhabitants of vegetation might add batteries so the thermal models run solely in excessive peak occasions; that group might put 1,000 megawatts of storage to work.
Additional down the street, offshore wind growth will deliver a large inflow of variable renewable vitality to the Lengthy Island coast. Cuomo lately enlarged the state’s offshore wind goal to 9 gigawatts by 2035, in comparison with the entire absence of any offshore wind right this moment.
Lengthy Island will function the receiving level for a lot of that energy, so capability to retailer that energy and ship it to the mainland exterior of transmission-constrained hours might show precious down the street, though the precise buildings for monetizing that worth haven’t been developed.
Activate dwelling vitality gadgets
NYSERDA additionally introduced a joint venture with utility Public Service Electrical and Fuel Lengthy Island, which operates the native grid, to compensate prospects who select to place solar-paired batteries of their properties.
After the preliminary deployment incentive, individuals can earn extra by the utility’s Dynamic Load Administration tariff, which pays for demand discount throughout peak hours. That charge is accessible to different prospects too, however is particularly properly fitted to dwelling photo voltaic and storage prospects.
The tariff features a 10-year fee from PSEG to ratepayers in change for decreasing load through the peak occasions of the 12 months. That charge pays extra in constrained areas, as decided by marginal value of service research, Doling mentioned. The utility will name on aggregators, like dwelling photo voltaic and storage supplier Sunrun, to ship demand reductions from its buyer base in these focused areas.
This program joins a rising record of “bring-your-own-device” applications in Northeastern states that search to attach utilities to gadgets that prospects are putting in anyway, as one method to discover behind-the-meter sources that might delay the necessity to construct new grid infrastructure. New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts are pursuing residential demand-reduction applications with batteries, too.
“This method permits utilities to leverage, as a grid useful resource, the rising variety of batteries that firms like Sunrun are putting in for our prospects,” Sunrun spokesperson Shane Levy wrote in an e-mail. “We predict the outcome will probably be extra batteries put in with photo voltaic on Lengthy Island and a larger use of batteries to decrease grid prices for all prospects.”
Residents of Lengthy Island have a extra private purpose to put money into batteries, moreover the rising grid providers income streams.
“Hurricane Sandy may be very contemporary in everybody’s minds,” Doling famous. “All the parents that had PV that went offline are wanting storage to permit at the least a primary degree of islanding.”
Now prospects looking for zero-emission backup energy can help the funding with participation within the bring-your-own-device service.