What We’re Reading This Week: Friday, March 24

March 24, 2017

Emily Jiles



Energy Manager: Chicago Suburb Selected for Community Energy Storage Pilot

In the Chicago suburb of Beecher, Illinois, Commonwealth Edison has launched a Community Energy Storage (CES) pilot to investigate the value of battery technology to reduce the impact of power outages in residential areas where customers experience service interruptions, particularly during extreme weather events…Featuring a 25kWh lithium-ion battery, the CES unit has been installed near the existing ComEd equipment that provides power to the homes of Beecher customers selected for the pilot.

Utility Week: Councils must develop energy storage strategies

…Speaking at the Association for Public Sector Excellence’s (APSE) energy conference, APSE associate Ray Noble said the price of energy storage systems will come down “faster than solar” and “every onshore wind and solar farm will have one in the future”… “If we can jump on the boat now, because nobody else is on the boat, we will be a world leader and selling these services to other people. That’s what they [central government] are really after.”

E&E News: Energy storage is America’s industry to lose

…Blunden and a growing number of experts believe that energy storage will be worth tens of billions of dollars in revenue within a decade, regardless of what the Trump administration does to harm or help… The problem, Blunden said, is that the United States is wandering into a global competition without much urgency or a plan…This E&E News series explores what it would look like for the United States to seize the coming energy storage industry.


PR Newswire: SDG&E Spurs Energy Storage Innovation With Flow Battery Technology

…During the four-year demonstration project, SDG&E will be researching if flow battery technology can economically enhance the delivery of reliable energy to customers, integrate growing amounts of renewable energy and increase the flexibility in the way the company manages the power grid.

PG&E: PG&E Renewable Energy Deliveries Grow; GHG-Free Portfolio Is Nearly 70 Percent

…One of the nation’s cleanest energy companies, PG&E delivered an average of 32.8 percent of its electricity in 2016 from renewable resources including solar, wind, geothermal, biomass and hydroelectric sources. That’s more than a three-percent increase in just one year, and the highest percentage yet for the state’s largest combined natural gas and electric company.

Utility Dive: ‘They’re not meters or ratepayers’: Inside Austin Energy’s customer-focused business strategy

In 2015, Austin Energy residential customers had the second lowest energy bills of any utility in Texas. But the utility spends less time comparing itself to other power providers, says Vice President of Customer Energy Solutions Deborah Kimberly, and instead looks to a broader range of offerings and products to judge how it’s doing. “We’re comparing ourselves not necessarily to other utilities, but other service providers,” said Kimberly…


Greentech Media: California Solar Industry and Utilities Unveil Dueling Solar-Storage Tariffs

…Over the next year or so, the state’s investor-owned utilities are under regulatory pressure to create specially designed, optional tariffs available to homeowners or businesses that want to invest in solar PV, batteries, EVs or on-site energy controls.

Utility Dive: California bills propose ‘clean peak’ standard to boost renewables deployment

…The bills would require utilities to deploy clean energy during peak demand in order to meet California’s aggressive greenhouse gas and renewable energy goals, while mandating the California Public Utilities Commission determine a percentage of kWh each peak-load time period to be served with clean energy.


Energy Storage News: Energy storage software will help build the grid of the future

…The ability to optimally and cost-effectively design and control an ESS through advanced software is bringing down many of the barriers that have held back the development of energy storage to date. As the industry continues to mature, software’s significance will expand by allowing for communication and coordination between systems distributed throughout the grid, providing the essential links for a clean and resilient power system.


International Energy Agency: IEA finds CO2 emissions flat for third straight year even as global economy grew in 2016

Global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions were flat for a third straight year in 2016 even as the global economy grew, according to the International Energy Agency, signaling a continuing decoupling of emissions and economic activity. This was the result of growing renewable power generation, switches from coal to natural gas, improvements in energy efficiency, as well as structural changes in the global economy…


EcoWatch: 25 Cities Now Committed to 100% Renewables

…Madison, Wisconsin and Abita Springs, Louisiana are transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy following respective city council votes on Tuesday. Madison and Abita Springs are the first cities in Wisconsin and Louisiana to make this commitment. They join 23 other cities across the United States—from large ones like San Diego, California and Salt Lake City, Utah to smaller ones like Georgetown, Texas and Greensburg, Kansas—that have declared similar goals.

The Guardian: Europe’s renewable energy revolution

…An international power grid is gradually developing, using power interconnectors to trade surplus energy across national electricity networks, allowing big wind power producers in northern Europe, for example, to trade electricity with large solar energy generators in southern Europe.