Recent NY-BEST News and Notes

News stories and other notes about NY-BEST, New York State and the Battery and Energy Storage Industry beyond New York. Only the last few weeks of news are shown here, to see older news click here.

 NY-BEST Member

Aclara and Enbala Form Strategic Alliance
5 days 8 hours ago
Aclara Technologies (“Aclara”) and Enbala Power Networks announce a new strategic alliance through which Aclara adds Enbala’s Virtual Power Plant (VPP) technology to Aclara’s utility solution suite. Aclara is a leading supplier of smart infrastructure solutions (SIS) to electric, gas and water utilities. Enbala is the world’s leading VPP and distributed energy resource management software company.
Straight Outta BQDM: Consolidated Edison looks to expand its non-wires approach
6 days 8 hours ago
Consolidated Edison's Brooklyn-Queens Neighborhood Program can be called many things: successful, innovative, groundbreaking or grid-edge. Unveiled several years ago, the utility deferred a $1.2 billion substation upgrade by contracting for 52 MW of demand reductions and 17 MW of distributed resource investments. The strategy involved harnessing a range of distributed resources and efficiencies rather than spending ratepayer funds on traditional utility solutions (typically wires). The project was successful, and last week state regulators authorized its extension.
CEBIP Battery Barons Inch Toward 76West Title
1 week 8 hours ago
A Stony Brook battery business with European roots has made the cut in a state clean-energy contest. StorEn Technologies, which is peddling a proprietary vanadium-flow battery for stationary energy storage, is one of eight finalists in the 76West Clean Energy Competition, which is spun out of the state’s Southern Tier Soaring initiative – a $3.1 billion investment in business development and community growth across New York’s southernmost economic zones.
New York PSC expands ConEd's non-wires alternatives program
1 week 2 days ago
The New York State Public Service Commission last week extended and expanded Consolidated Edison’s (ConEd) Brooklyn Queens Demand Management program, a "non-wires" approach to deferring capital investments through the use of distributed resources. The program was launched in 2014 in tandem with the state's Reforming the Energy Vision to save customers millions by deferring the construction of a $1 billion substation. By summer 2018, ConEd will have contracted for more than 52 MW of non-traditional solutions.
South Australia takes Tesla up on ‘100 days or free’ energy storage promise
1 week 2 days ago
An offer from Tesla CEO Elon Musk to complete a large-scale energy storage project in South Australia within 100 days or deliver it for free has been taken up by the region’s government. Since suffering blackouts, especially the severe ones caused by weather events in September last year, South Australia’s precarious energy security has come into question and local government has been keen to find a quick and lasting solution. The South Australia administration sought self-reliance and to add energy capacity.
NYPSC Extends Con Ed Demand Program
1 week 3 days ago
The New York Public Service Commission last week approved an indefinite extension for Consolidated Edison’s demand management program in New York City’s Brooklyn and Queens boroughs, which aims to defer an estimated $1 billion in local infrastructure spending. The commission’s July 13 order retains the original Brooklyn-Queens Demand Management (BQDM) program’s $200 million budget but caps expenditures on utility-side non-traditional solutions — such as storage batteries — at $50 million, including what the company has spent to date.
Southern will test Tesla batteries in 1 MWh pilot for Gulf Power subsidiary
1 week 5 days ago
Southern Company and its Gulf Power subsidiary have begun work on a 250 kW, 1 MWh energy storage pilot project in Pensacola, Fla. The McCrary Battery Energy Storage project will test a Tesla Powerpack lithium-ion industrial energy storage system over two years to evaluate how the system can help commercial and industrial customers store and use energy on demand, while improving resiliency saving energy costs.
Tesla is building the world’s biggest battery. Here’s how it will work.
2 weeks 1 day ago
By the end of the year, the state of South Australia will be home to the world’s biggest battery, if Elon Musk and Tesla make good on an ambitious commitment. The battery installation will be hooked up to a 99-turbine wind farm (which is still being built) and serve as an energy reservoir to ensure that the region has enough power, even during times when power demand peaks.
Siemens, AES form new energy storage joint venture Fluence
2 weeks 1 day ago
Siemens and AES Corp. on Monday said they plan to form a new global energy storage technology and services company. The new company, Fluence, would combine AES Advancion battery systems with Siemens’ Siestorage energy storage platform. Combined, the companies say they have 48 operational storage facilities in 13 countries, totaling 463 MW.
AMS taking ‘storage to new level’ with US$34m Series B investment
2 weeks 1 day ago
Business models used by Advanced Microgrid Solutions (AMS), including creating “Hybrid Electric Buildings” with energy storage, take the industry to a “new level”, VC investor Nancy Pfund has said. Investors including actor and activist Arnold Schwarzenegger, major Australian utility AGL, GE Ventures and Macquarie Capital participated in the successful raise of more than US$34 million in a Series B funding round, which AMS announced yesterday.
Ideal Power inverters, power conversion integrated into NEXTracker’s solar-plus-storage
2 weeks 2 days ago
A supply deal has been signed, for components made by Ideal Power to be integrated into NEXTracker’s solar-plus-storage offerings, including power conversion system and solar PV inverter. NEXTracker, a leader in single-axis tracking systems for ground-mounted PV systems, launched NX Fusion and NX Fusion Plus, the two products that constitute its pre-wired, pre-assembled solar-plus-storage solutions, earlier this year in multiple regions.
When Will Electric Cars Go Mainstream? It May Be Sooner Than You Think
2 weeks 4 days ago
As the world’s automakers place larger bets on electric vehicle technology, many industry analysts are debating a key question: How quickly can plug-in cars become mainstream? The conventional view holds that electric cars will remain a niche product for many years, plagued by high sticker prices and heavily dependent on government subsidies.
Pressed duck: Clipping the curve with energy storage
3 weeks 8 hours ago
Advocates say, given the right incentives, energy storage could help flatten the duck. The duck, of course, is the “duck curve” made famous by the California ISO as a representation of what happens when mid-day solar power peaks and then begins to fade and drop off, leading to a sharp spike in evening demand.
AES Closes $2.0 Billion in Non-Recourse Financing for 1.4 GW Southland Repowering Project in Southern California
3 weeks 8 hours ago
AES today announced the closing of $2.0 billion in long-term, non-recourse financing for its 1,384 MW Southland repowering project in Southern California. The financing consists of $1,475 million of senior secured notes amortizing through 2040 and a $492 million senior secured term loan amortizing through 2027, with a combined weighted average cost of debt of approximately 4.5%. AES will contribute approximately $350 million in equity to finance the balance of the total project cost of $2.3 billion.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – New York to Set Energy Storage Targets by Next Year
3 weeks 6 days ago
The New York state legislature has passed legislation to establish storage procurement targets through 2030. New York joins a growing list of states discussing energy storage targets and incentives driven by the prolific growth of distributed generation. The legislation will support the state’s push towards its 50 percent renewables goal which provides opportunities for a diverse range of storage technologies.
Stem’s virtual power plants take heat off Californian grid
3 weeks 6 days ago
Stem’s virtual power plants (VPPs) have been utilised to provide emergency demand response services in California during a major heatwave. The networks, installed at a number of locations throughout the state, were used to meet increasing demand from air conditioning. The anticipated weather event created a spike in day ahead wholesale prices on 19 June, and a need to reduce demand or increase supply.
Internationally Recognized Energy Storage Expert Dr. Christina Lampe-Onnerud to Keynote PlugVolt 2017 Battery Seminar
4 weeks 8 hours ago
Cadenza Innovation, a pioneering provider of energy storage solutions based on disruptive architectures for lithium-ion battery packs, today announced that Founder and CEO Dr. Christina Lampe-Onnerud will keynote the PlugVolt 2017 Battery Seminar.
Batteries Plus Backup Power: Advanced Microgrid Solutions Partners With PowerSecure
4 weeks 1 day ago
On Tuesday, PowerSecure, the provider of a 1.5-gigawatt fleet of backup power systems at grocery stores, data centers and military bases across the country, announced a partnership with Advanced Microgrid Solutions, the California startup that’s building more than 100 megawatts of utility-facing behind-the-meter battery systems.
New York Legislature Approves Energy Storage Bill
4 weeks 1 day ago
The New York state legislature recently approved a bill to establish an Energy Storage Deployment Program for the Empire State. The bill, sponsored by Assemblywoman Amy Paulin and Senator Joseph Griffo, passed both chambers of the legislature unanimously and now goes to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, D-N.Y., for his action.
Smart Energy Storage Methods Helping Companies Save Money and Power
4 weeks 1 day ago
Companies are increasingly turning to intelligent energy storage solutions to reduce emissions, increase energy efficiency and enable renewable energy.
ENGIE-Subsidiary Green Charge Named Number One Distributed-Scale Energy Storage Company in the US by Navigant Research
1 month 8 hours ago
Market research firm Navigant Research ranked Green Charge as the leading distributed-scale energy storage company in the United States. In its Q2 2017 Navigant Research Leaderboard Report: Distributed-Scale Energy Storage Systems (ESS) Integrators, Navigant Research evaluated and interviewed 14 companies with criteria based upon strategy and execution.
Stem energy storage network delivers power grid relief in California
1 month 8 hours ago
Stem Inc. activated several of its virtual power plants, networks of energy storage systems located at business and institutions throughout the state, multiple times during a heat wave last week, automatically dispatching stored energy to provide emergency demand response services to the California System Independent System Operator (California ISO) and three power utilities.
New York State Lawmakers Pass Energy Storage Target, Await Governor’s Signature
1 month 8 hours ago
The New York legislature passed a bill authorizing the Public Service Commission to set an energy storage target for 2030, when the state aims to draw half its power from renewable sources.
New York legislature’s push to create energy storage programmes and targets welcomed by industry
1 month 8 hours ago
US-based trade industry groups NY-BEST and the Energy Storage Association, have welcomed the passing of bills in New York providing a framework for the state’s regulator to establish an energy storage deployment programme.
How Intelligent Energy Storage Helps Make Businesses Green
1 month 3 days ago
Issues surrounding relationships between climate change, clean energy, and Internet of Things (IoT) technology have become prominent in our developing cultural narrative. This is especially true regarding businesses and organizations.
NY Green Bank’s Clean Tech Investments Reach $346 Million
1 month 3 days ago
Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the New York Green Bank achieved positive net income a year ahead of schedule. "New York is taking aggressive action to reduce our carbon footprint, and through the nation's largest green bank, we continue to invest in smart growth strategies that will help make our communities cleaner, greener and stronger than ever before," Cuomo said in a June 22 statement. "As the federal government continues to sidestep funding and support of critical clean energy programs, New York will continue to lead the fight against climate change, while working with communities across the state to ensure sustainable initiatives support future generations of New Yorkers."
Storage and Renewables: The Future Has Arrived
1 month 3 days ago
To make renewable sources “predictable” and use them without depending on their natural variability, Enel Green Power has installed special energy storage systems, integrating them into solar and wind plants: solutions that store clean energy when it is produced and allow it to be used when it’s needed.

 Beyond New York

Why Robert Bollinger decided an electric utility truck was 'obvious'
6 days 8 hours ago
Next week in Manhattan, journalists, electric-car advocates, and perhaps a few celebrities will gather for the unveiling of a new electric vehicle. It's not another fast, luxurious sedan or crossover utility vehicle. Instead, it's an electric utility truck called the Bollinger B1.
A Brighter Future for Electric Cars and the Planet
1 week 1 day ago
There is simply no credible way to address climate change without changing the way we get from here to there, meaning cars, trucks, planes and any other gas-guzzling forms of transportation. That is why it is so heartening to see electric cars, considered curios for the rich or eccentric or both not that long ago, now entering the mainstream.
Grid Batteries Are Poised to Become Cheaper Than Natural-Gas Plants in Minnesota
2 weeks 8 hours ago
When it comes to renewable energy, Minnesota isn’t typically a headline-grabber: in 2016 it got about 18 percent of its energy from wind, good enough to rank in the top 10 states. But it’s just 28th in terms of installed solar capacity, and its relatively small size means projects within its borders rarely garner the attention that giants like California and Texas routinely get.
Energy storage paired with solar more cost effective in Minnesota today
2 weeks 8 hours ago
As federal policy on renewable energy is being rolled back, a new UMN-led report finds that when environmental benefits are considered combined energy storage and solar arrays can be a more cost-effective alternative in Minnesota – implementable today – to natural gas peaking plants, which are fired up only to meet peak demand.
VIZn claims to deliver energy storage for renewables at record low price
2 weeks 8 hours ago
Utility-scale zinc-iron flow battery maker VIZn Energy claims it can deliver energy storage to pair with solar or wind at a “record low price” of just US$0.04 per kilowatt-hour. Making an announcement to coincide with Intersolar North America, taking place this week, VIZn said that energy storage could now be added to grid-scale wind or solar PV installations at a lower price than new coal-fired generation in the US, which Bloomberg New Energy Finance has benchmarked at around US$0.06 per kWh.
VW says it needs '40 gigafactories' for electric-car batteries by 2025
2 weeks 1 day ago
VW Group remains one of the world's three largest carmakers, along with Toyota and General Motors, but the German automaker foresees challenges ahead. Specifically, Volkswagen believes the industry will face a shortage of lithium-ion batteries if new investment is not made soon for additional cell fabrication factories, often referred to using Tesla's coinage of "gigafactories."
One year of PV-battery diesel hybrid operations on a Caribbean island: THEnergy confirms the outstanding performance of the SMA microgrid
2 weeks 5 days ago
SMA Sunbelt commissioned a 1.89 MW solar PV and 1 MW / 572 kWh Li-Ion battery energy storage system, in March 2016. The objective of the retrofitted renewable energy plant is to reduce the diesel consumption of existing diesel generators. THEnergy has performed a data analysis for the first year of operations. Large-scale hybrid systems are rather complex and for island utilities it is difficult to fully assess the outcome of hybridizing their diesel power plants with solar power plants on fuel consumption.
Project Financing Grows for Commercial Energy Storage, Lags for Residential
2 weeks 5 days ago
The energy storage industry needs better financing to break out of its early stages. So far, commercial project financing is becoming more widely available, but residential financing has barely gotten started. The high upfront cost of storage makes it hard for behind-the-meter customers to purchase out of pocket, and they can't call on the kind of capital available to utilities or large power producers. For financiers, meanwhile, energy storage poses several risks: It's a relatively new technology with emerging business models and revenue streams, both of which are subject to the influence of shifting tariff structures.
Can I borrow a cup of electricity?
3 weeks 8 hours ago
Garry Golden logged on to Facebook one spring day in 2015 and checked the private group for his street in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn. One of his neighbors had posted: “Anyone interested in community solar panels?” Golden’s answer was a resounding yes. He began to research the process and galvanize support in his close-knit neighborhood.
Volvo, Betting on Electric, Moves to Phase Out Conventional Engines
3 weeks 8 hours ago
Volvo Cars on Wednesday became the first mainstream automaker to sound the death knell of the internal combustion engine, saying that all the models it introduces starting in 2019 will be either hybrids or powered solely by batteries. The decision is the boldest commitment by any major car company to technologies that currently represent a small share of the total vehicle market but are increasingly viewed as essential to combating climate change and urban pollution.
The Energy Secretary Is Wrong: The Grid is Ready for Renewables
3 weeks 8 hours ago
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will soon release a study asserting that wind and solar energy are undermining the electricity grid and that only fossil fuel and nuclear plants can assure the grid’s reliability. Making this prediction requires no extrasensory powers. It stems directly from the April 14 memo by Energy Secretary Rick Perry that ordered the study. Echoing a popular argument of the fossil fuel industry, Perry wrote that pro-renewables regulations issued by past U.S. administrations “threaten to undercut the performance of the grid” and have caused “the erosion of critical baseload resources” derived from coal, natural gas, and nuclear energy. In stating these controversial views, Perry seemed to dictate the study’s findings.
Four Green Technologies Growing Fast Enough To Achieve Zero-Emissions World, IEA Says
3 weeks 3 days ago
Four green technologies are growing fast enough to do their part in a zero-carbon-emissions world by mid-century, an International Energy Agency official said this week in Chicago. But they need a little help from other technologies, said Eric Masenet, the head of IEA's Energy Demand Technology Unit, which studies practical paths to the international community's climate goals.
McKinsey: Cheaper batteries present imminent threat of load defection for utilities
3 weeks 5 days ago
Continued energy storage cost declines present a growing threat of disruption for utility business models, a new study from McKinsey & Co. finds. The study reports energy storage is already economical for many commercial customers at today’s prices and that with the paring back of incentives such as net metering in many states, combining solar power with energy storage is beginning to be attractive for some households.
Southern Company Advances National Microgrid Strategy
4 weeks 8 hours ago
Another major utility is on the move advancing a microgrid strategy to build projects beyond its regulated service territory, this one Georgia-based Southern Company.
German utility EWE wants to build giant redox flow system in underground caverns
4 weeks 1 day ago
One of Germany’s largest utilities wants to build what it says could be the biggest 'battery' in the world to date – using underground caverns filled with saltwater as a giant redox flow energy storage system.
Vestas reveals storage plans
1 month 4 days ago
Vestas is in talks with developers to build combined wind and solar plants that could also feature battery storage, Vestas executive Jorge Magalhaes told journalists in Copenhagen. The Danish manufacturer plans to identify three to six pilot projects this year to be built in 2018, with commercial projects available from 2019.

 Press Releases

NY-BEST Applauds the NYS Legislature for Unanimous Passage of Energy Storage Deployment Bill
1 month 4 days ago
NY-BEST Applauds the NYS Legislature for Unanimous Passage of Energy Storage Deployment Bill Legislation recognizes the important role for energy storage in modernizing New York’s electric grid (Albany, NEW YORK, June 22, 2017) – The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) today applauded the New York State Legislature for its unanimous passage of The Energy Storage Deployment Program bill.  The bill, sponsored by Assemblywoman Amy Paulin and Senator Joseph Griffo, provides a regulatory framework for the Public Service Commission to establish an energy storage deployment program. “NY-BEST and our members in the energy storage industry are extremely grateful to Senator Griffo and Assemblywoman Paulin for their leadership and to the entire New York State Legislature for their strong support of energy storage, as evidenced by the Legislature’s unanimous passage of this bill,” said Dr. William Acker, Executive Director of NY-BEST, “Energy storage has an important role to play in modernizing New York’s electric grid, providing real benefits for ratepayers and producing environmental and economic benefits for the state. This legislation will help accelerate deployment of important storage resources on the state’s electric grid.” The bill would require the Public Service Commission to establish a target amount of energy storage to be deployed in New York through 2030 and to create programs that will enable the State to meet the target. It will next go to Governor Andrew Cuomo for his action. “Energy storage plays an important role in creating a more efficient, cost-effective and reliable electric grid system. Energy storage technologies, such as advanced batteries, are being developed right here in New York State and this legislation will help deploy these technologies on New York’s electric grid, creating new jobs and supporting the State's economy," said Senator Joseph Griffo. “Expanding energy storage is critical for New York to meet its goals by enabling renewable energy to be used continuously, reducing the need for energy produced using fossil fuels,” Assemblywoman Amy Paulin said, “Storage also increases the resiliency of the electric grid by supplying power in the event of an electrical outage. The creation of an energy storage deployment program will increase the installation of energy storage systems throughout the state and accelerate these benefits.” The legislation aligns with New York State’s Clean Energy Standard, which mandates that 50 percent of the State’s energy come from renewable sources by 2030, and the State’s Reforming the Energy Vision initiative which seeks to create a cleaner, more affordable and resilient grid through the increased use of distributed energy resources, such as solar and energy storage. Energy storage provides flexible, reliable power that produces no greenhouse gas or harmful air emissions. Pairing storage with renewable energy like wind and solar power allows the energy that is generated when the sun is shining and the wind is blowing to be stored for use at a later time. In this way, storage helps balance supply and demand, reduces pressure on the electric grid at peak demand times, and makes the electric grid system more flexible, efficient and resilient.  Energy storage also has the ability to rapidly respond to fluctuating demands for electricity, helping to stabilize the grid and ensure system reliability. The global energy storage sector is growing rapidly and the State is beginning to experience some of that growth. A recent report by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority found that the number of jobs in New York’s storage industry grew by 1,000 between 2012 and 2015, a 30 percent increase.  The report also noted that job growth in New York could grow to nearly 27,000 jobs by 2030, assuming favorable policy and regulatory programs are in place. Earlier this year NY-BEST and Strategen Consulting released a study showing that energy storage, along with a portfolio of other clean energy sources, can fill the expected capacity gap when Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant closes, producing savings for customers and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. That Study can be viewed here:  https://www.strategen.com/new-blog/2017/5/8/indian-point-replacement-options About NY-BEST The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology (NY-BEST) Consortium is a non-profit corporation and industry-led consortium with more than 150 organizational members. NY-BEST’s mission is to catalyze and grow the energy storage industry and establish New York State as a global leader in the energy storage industry. Visit us on the web at www.ny-best.org ###     Contact: Denise Sheehan, NY-BEST Phone: (518)463-8644 (office), (518)429-6924 (mobile) Email: denise@caphill.com