New York utility Con Edison has signed its greatest power storage contract so far, a 100-megawatt/400 megawatt-hour lithium-ion battery undertaking that may assist steadiness a grid going through rising ranges of offshore wind and different renewable energy within the years to come back. 

Underneath the contract introduced Wednesday, developer 174 Energy International will construct the battery system, and Con Edison will bid its energy into New York wholesale power markets for seven years after it begins operations in 2022. After that, 174 Energy will take over the battery system’s operations and wholesale market worth. 

The undertaking being constructed at a former energy plant web site in Astoria, Queens, is the primary bulk power storage system to be contracted underneath Con Edison’s request for proposals (RFP) course of launched final yr. It’s the most important utility-contracted battery within the state to date, although impartial energy producer LS Energy is planning to construct at the least 300 MW/1,200 MWh of batteries at its Ravenswood energy plant in Queens. 

New York will want much more power storage to satisfy its aim of reaching 70 % renewable electrical energy by 2030 and a carbon-free electrical energy system by 2040. The state has set targets of 1,500 MW of storage by 2025 and three,000 MW by 2030, and created a set of insurance policies together with incentives for storage builders and procurement necessities for its greatest utilities. 

Monetary phrases of the deal weren’t disclosed, though a Con Edison spokesperson stated that the undertaking was prone to are available at an business commonplace undertaking value of $1 million per megawatt plus a further 25 % premium for land and growth prices in New York Metropolis. The state-owned utility New York Energy Authority owns the land, which is the positioning of the previous Poletti energy plant

The scale of the battery, and the economics to justify it, characterize an enormous departure in comparison with the batteries constructed within the state up to now. The most important so far is the 20 MW/16.5 MWh system developed close to Albany by Key Seize Power. 

In New York Metropolis, the most important battery is the four.eight MW/16.four MWh Gateway Middle undertaking constructed by developer Enel X to serve Con Edison’s want to cut back grid congestion and defer grid upgrades as a part of its Brooklyn-Queens Neighborhood Program. Grid reliability can be the core use case for Con Edison’s 2 MW battery at Ozone Park in Queens, and a 1 MW demonstration undertaking with Shell/GI Power in Staten Island. 

A battery enterprise case geared towards a renewable-rich future 

The brand new battery with 174 International Energy, in contrast, will probably be serving the wholesale power, capability and working reserves markets of state grid operator NYISO. At current, it’s not clear that these markets will supply the revenues to justify this enterprise case, Daniel Finn-Foley, power storage director at Wooden Mackenzie, stated in a Wednesday e mail. 

However downstate New York is going through important supply-demand imbalances that may require large-scale power storage to handle, he famous. New York Metropolis and environs make up a lot of the state’s electrical energy demand, however has lower than one-third of the state’s present renewable power capability, and there’s not sufficient transmission capability to hold all of New York’s ample upstate wind and hydro energy to its downstate load facilities. 

New York’s plan to shut the Indian Level nuclear energy plant by subsequent yr, and retire its most polluting energy crops by 2025, will solely exacerbate this imbalance. Work is underway to construct out the transmission system between upstate and downstate, however these are nonetheless years from completion. 

On the similar time, New York has additionally set a goal of 9 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035. It has already awarded 1.7 GW of offshore wind contracts set to be on-line by mid-decade, and opened a solicitation for as much as 2.5 GW extra this summer time. 

All that offshore wind will have to be related to transmission techniques in Lengthy Island and New York Metropolis, and be balanced with a grid that will probably be quickly electrifying its constructing heating and transportation wants now served by fossil fuels. 

“Wholesale market income at present is probably not sufficient for a storage system like this to pencil out however, like planting an orchard, it is an funding sooner or later,” Finn-Foley stated. “With huge quantities of offshore wind deliberate over the approaching decade, this undertaking will enable ConEd to maneuver in direction of its 300 MW interim storage goal whereas 174 Energy International plans for a wealthy harvest down the road.” 

Con Edison has not awarded every other tasks from its 2019 RFP that may assist meet its 2023 goal for 300 MW of storage with at the least 4 hours storage capability. However its pending petition with the New York Public Service Fee is anticipated to result in extra procurements of utility-scale storage when authorised subsequent yr, a Con Edison spokesperson informed Greentech Media. 

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