Solar Connecticut Fights for Energy Storage

SHR Energy Management Industry Snapshot, News

On November 14, 2019, Solar Connecticut board members gave testimony and input to the Public Utilities Regulation Authority (PURA) to assist with the implementation of energy storage. All stakeholders are currently participating in designing programs for rapid deployment of this technology in the state of Connecticut in an effort to get to Zero Carbon by 2040.

Noel Lafayette of SHR Energy Management, Jamie Smith and Jeff Macel of Lodestar Energy, along with Brad Mondschein of Akiro Consulting, reviewed the following presentation in open hearings.  

Solar Connecticut PURA Solutions Day

The Massachusetts “State of Charge” Report

  • A 2015 $10 Million initiative to evaluate and demonstrate the benefits of deploying energy storage in Massachusetts.
  • Recommends 600 MW of energy storage by 2025 $800 Million in system benefits to Massachusetts ratepayers
  • 1,766 MW of new energy storage creates up to $2.3 billion in ratepayer savings (deferred T and D investment, lower electric prices, lower peak demand, increased grid reliability and resiliency and more.

Behind The Meter Residential Storage (Dispatched by EDC)

  • Electric storage provides resiliency in the event of a grid failure
  • Without “Time Of Use” rates, projects will not be cost-effective
  • Grid benefits when storage serves demand during peaks (cut energy costs, better use of peak generation and Transmission and Distribution equipped)
  • Storage leveraged across the grid addresses RE integration and distribution upgrade deferrals
  • EDC in Massachusetts with dispatching storage assets in homes

Storage Opens Path to More Distributed Energy Resources (DERs)

  • Increases DER hosting capacity and value of paired DR, DG
  • More efficient grid utilization
  • Defer substation/feeder upgrades
  • Increase circuit reliability & power quality
  • Meet system capacity needs

Fair Competition to Develop Storage Projects is Critical for Solar+Storage Success

  • No limits on non-utility enterprises to market and deploy storage systems.
  • EDCs must consider all forms of resource ownership (utility-owned, 3rd party owned, customer-owned, joint ownership) when procuring storage systems.
  • Focus on Connecticut proposals and vendors to grow local jobs.

Mass Proposals to Jump Start Storage

  • Customer-sited rebate modeled after DOER’s EV rebate to encourage Commercial and Industrial businesses to invest in storage that:
    1. Lowers electric bills
    2. Better Utilizes on-site generation
    3. Provides grid benefits by reducing peak demand
  • Grants to small to medium-sized manufacturers for feasibility studies.
  • Commercial, industrial and municipal resilience solar and storage solutions to protect from service interruptions.
  • Support for encouraging the use of storage where “solar + storage” provides value to the system owner and ratepayer

Ease Interconnection Process

  • Speed of solar development and new technologies have outpaced EDC’s ability to keep interconnection process consistent
  • The streamlined process gives applicants greater certainty of interconnection time and cost; EDC’s assured interconnecting storage will not negatively impact the grid
  • See “Report on interconnection requirements for PV industry in the Northeast U.S.” NESEMC; July 2017
  • SolarConnecticut to address further in RE06

SHR Energy Management has delivered comprehensive solar energy solutions throughout the northeast U.S. for over a decade. SHR Founder and Chief Executive Noel Lafayette of Weston CT demonstrates a deep knowledge of solar industry complexities, including regulatory matters, financial incentives, and renewable energy credit markets. SHR draws on this knowledge to develop commercial, municipal, and utility projects ranging in size from 200kw to 25MW. For more information, contact us today.