Batteries, Energy Storage, News, Renewables

PG&E hopes to ramp up massive California energy storage procurements

Northern California utility Pacific Gas & Electric Co. is asking for approval from state regulators to procure more than 400 MW of lithium-ion energy storage from five projects.

The filing with the California Public Utilities Commission details agreements on the five energy storage projects all across the state. The agreements are results from a competitive request for offers that PG&E launched in February in response to a 2019 CPUC decision on potential grid reliability issues in the state.

“PG&E is deeply committed to the California vision of a sustainable energy future,” Fong Wan, senior vice president of energy policy and procurement at PG&E, said in a statement. “As we continue to integrate large amounts of intermittent renewable energy, we are now taking advantage of advancements in energy storage technology to ensure that customers continue to receive clean and reliable power from a flexible and dependable electric grid.”

Under the CPUC decision, PG&E is authorized to procure at least 716.9 MW of system reliability resources. These five energy storage projects represent about 423 MW of that.

Each of these will be lithium-ion systems and at least some will be co-located with solar or geothermal plants.

The selected projects include:

  • Diablo Energy Storage, LLC – Diablo is comprised of three separate 15-year agreements totaling 150 MW. The three projects will be stand-alone lithium ion battery energy storage resources located in Contra Costa County. This project is an expansion of a 50 MW energy storage project under contract to PG&E in Contra Costa County, which is currently in development
  • Dynegy Marketing and Trade, LLC –Vistra Energy MOSS 100 is comprised of a 10-year agreement for 100 MW. The project is a stand‑alone lithium ion battery energy storage resource located in Moss Landing, Calif. (Monterey County). This project is an expansion of a 300 MW energy storage project under contract to PG&E at the same location, which is currently in development.
  • Gateway Energy Storage, LLC – This is a 15-year agreement for a 50 MW stand‑alone lithium ion battery energy storage resource located in San Diego.
  • NextEra Energy Resources Development, LLC – The Blythe energy storage project involving NextEra is comprised of a 15-year agreement for 63 MW. The project is a lithium ion battery energy storage resource and is co-located with an existing 110 MW solar project built in 2016 located in Blythe, Calif. (Riverside County).
  • Coso Battery Storage, LLC – Coso is comprised of a 15-year agreement for a 60 MW transmission-connected, stand‑alone lithium ion battery energy storage resource and is co-located with an existing geothermal project in Little Lake, Calif. (Inyo County).

Each project is scheduled to be online by August 2021.

The state of California has set a goal of zero net carbon emissions by 2045. Many of its utilities are shifting into renewable energy projects, which require grid stabilizing resources such as gas-fired peaking power or energy storage.

A CPUC-commissioned report last year examined potential combinations of high-level solar penetration and energy storage accompaniment. It found that nearly 10,000 MW of four-hour energy storage resources could receive close to 100 percent capacity value on the California Independent System Operator system in 2030.

Earlier this month, Southern California Edison announced 770 MW of battery storage power purchase agreements going online in 2021.

— — — — —

Energy Storage Breakthroughs is a key content track for the POWERGEN International conference workshops. POWERGEN 2020 is planned for December 8-10 in Orlando, Florida.