March 12, 2019 Read More →

Developer Invenergy proposes large solar-plus-storage project in Wisconsin

Wisconsin State Journal:

The developer of a proposed solar farm in Iowa County is planning a second solar farm in Kenosha County that could feature the first utility-scale battery storage in Wisconsin. Chicago-based Invenergy last week submitted an engineering plan for a 200-megawatt solar farm with a 50-megawatt battery component.

That’s larger than any battery currently deployed on the nation’s power grid and the first in the state of Wisconsin, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Invenergy has installed 31.5-megawatt batteries in Illinois and West Virginia, which account for most of the capacity in the company’s advanced storage portfolio.

Batteries enable renewable energy sources like wind and solar to deliver power on demand, similar to traditional fossil fuel generators. They can also contribute to grid stability and provide reserve capacity to meet peaks in demand.

“With batteries, it can compete in the marketplace in multiple ways,” said Andy Olsen, a senior policy advocate with the Environmental Law & Policy Center in Madison. “Not only on the power but when we get the power, which matters quite a bit.”

Invenergy says it plans to submit a permit application to the Public Service Commission in April. Company spokeswoman Beth Conley said the Paris solar farm is being proposed as a developer-owned project but the company is in talks with potential utility buyers.

As of December, there were 119 utility-scale batteries with a combined capacity of 845 megawatts deployed nationwide, according to the EIA. Only two dozen of those are larger than 10 megawatts.

More: Proposed Kenosha County solar farm could feature Wisconsin’s first utility-scale battery

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