Batteries Are Carving Out Space on the Grid
Last fall, Southern California Edison (SCE) had some big decisions to make. The giant utility, which serves 14 million people across the southern half of the state, needed to procure just over 2 GW of power from a welter of options to meet its projected needs. Among many elements to consider was SCE’s mandate from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to procure at least 50 MW of energy storage by the end of 2014. This requirement was part of the CPUC’s directive to the state’s investor-owned utilities to procure 1.3 GW of storage by 2020.
The competitive bidding was robust, and SCE received more than 1,800 offers of all sorts. When the dust settled, no one was surprised that SCE had met its 50-MW storage requirement.
What was a surprise to nearly everyone was that SCE exceeded that target by more than five times.