Friday, August 27, 2021

PUC Seeking Additional Comments On Electric Storage Policies To Increase Reliability And Resiliency

The Public Utility Commission
published notice in the August 28 PA Bulletin inviting additional comments on the issue of energy storage resources as electric distribution assets.  (formal notice)

The PUC published its initial notice inviting comments on December 19, 2020 inviting comments on policy changes needed to increase the reliability and resiliency of electric distribution systems from weather-related threats, including thunderstorms, floods, hurricanes, derechos and ice storms.

Electric distribution companies have seen significant negative impacts to reliability due to increased severe weather, as documented in the Commission’s most recent Electric Service Reliability in PA Report.

Nearly all commenters agreed that energy storage has the potential to improve reliability and resiliency on a distribution grid, according to the PUC. 

While commenters offered their views on the answers to the questions asked in the Secretarial Letter, additional information is required to allow the Commission to formulate a clear policy on this matter. 

Several questions need to be answered if energy storage is to be considered a distribution asset, including--

-- What are the parameters that would allow for the use of energy storage on the distribution grid? For example, what factors should be used in the consideration of the energy-storage project? 

-- What EDCs have undertaken energy-storage initiatives as a pilot program and what were the results and lessons-learned?

-- Under what circumstances is it appropriate to deploy energy storage as compared to traditional infrastructure upgrades?

-- Who should own an energy-storage asset? EDCs, third-party vendors or some combination of both?

-- What processes should the Commission use to review requests to utilize energy storage as a distribution asset and recover associated costs?

-- What cost recovery mechanisms should be implemented for the ownership and operation of energy-storage assets?

-- What are the appropriate models and limitations necessary to allow energy storage to participate in wholesale power markets?

Read the entire PA Bulletin notice for more on each of these questions and how to submit comments.

Documents related to this issue can be found under PUC Docket # M-2020-3022877.

Related Article:

-- PUC Invites Comments On Electric Storage Policies To Increase Reliability And Resiliency Related To Increasingly Frequent Weather-Related Threats

Related Articles - Storage:

-- DEP Forming New PA Energy Storage Consortium; Stakeholder Meeting Sept. 28

-- DEP Citizens Advisory Council To Hear About Energy Storage, Climate Change Impacts, Clean Energy Workforce Needs June 15

-- DEP Issues Report Assessing PA's Energy Storage Capacity For A Cleaner, More Resilient Electric Grid

[Posted: August 27, 2021]  PA Environment Digest

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