July 31, 2019 Read More →

Study: New York State regulators are ignoring battery-storage trends

Utility Dive:

The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) on Friday submitted comments criticizing state regulators’ July 1 unit-by-unit peaker study, saying it underestimated how many peakers could be replaced by battery storage.

The Department of Public Service’s study identified at least 275 MW of peaking units, or about 6% of the total rated capacity of New York’s peaking fleet, as potential candidates for replacement with six‐hour energy storage. This number increases to over 500 MW when using eight-hour duration storage.

“There’s a lot of momentum right now for the replacement of large-scale assets on the grid with storage, and that’s why these studies are so important,” Bill Acker, executive director of NY-BEST, told Utility Dive.

NY-BEST, a nonprofit trade association representing 175 member organizations, identified three major concerns with the methodology of the peakers study, according to its filing:

  • The study ignores the temporal characteristics of traditional peakers that are more restrictive and less flexible than energy storage resources, and assumes that peaker operation is solely determined by system reliability needs;
  • It is examining snapshots of individual units in isolation without a system model, or taking into account other operational factors at a given time, can create misleading results; 
  • And load shapes and peaking needs will change dramatically as renewable energy increases, making the Study’s use of 2013 data inappropriate to analyze future New York peaking needs.

Acker said that the study had its merit in showing that there is an opportunity for energy storage to replace traditional peaker plants, even under 2013’s conservative load profile assumption.

“We are at a point where energy storage can replace peakers in many, many situations. We want make sure that we do get this right, so that we’re able to really take advantage of the benefits of the storage technology,” Acker said.

More: New York peaker study underestimates storage potential

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