California Requires Energy Storage As Preferred Energy Source

California’s Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) hinted they would make energy storage mandatory in new solar plants, which has now taken a major step forward.

When CPUC approved Southern California Edison’s plan to buy 1,400-1,800 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy by 2021, CPUC inserted the requirement that at least 50 MW of that has to come from energy storage and up to 600 MW must come from preferred resources, including energy storage. 

"Energy storage resources must be considered along with preferred resources including energy efficiency, demand response and distributed generation," says CPUC.

"This landmark decision represents a major breakthrough for energy storage market development in California and nationwide," says Janice Lin, Executive Director of the California Energy Storage Alliance.  "This provides a much needed market-signal that energy storage will be considered as a key asset class to help California address its long term local reliability and environmental quality needs for clean energy resources."

Passed in 2010, Assembly Bill 2514 is widely viewed as landmark energy storage legislation for the nation. It requires CPUC to establish 2015 and 2020 targets for energy storage procurement if cost effective and commercially viable by October 2013.

The intermittent nature of solar and wind is challenging, because it means these projects can’t send electricity to the grid as consistently or reliably as fossil-fuel or nuclear sources. Energy storage technology levels the playing field by helping generators store power so that demand can be better balanced.

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Comments on “California Requires Energy Storage As Preferred Energy Source”

  1. Sol shapiro

    Glad to see recognition of need for storage. Is this there to encourage Concentrating Solar Power with pre-generation thermal storage. I think this technology backed by natural gas whe storage is consmed can be the backbone of a renewables grid!8F


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