Solar developer 8minutenergy expands into energy storage with 1 GW pipeline

Dive Brief:

  • 8minutenergy Renewables is expanding its product offerings beyond solar to include energy storage in several forms, the company announced yesterday. 
  • The company, already developing more than 5 GW of solar in North America, said it is focused on standalone storage as well as solar-plus-storage developments, and has 1 GW of storage projects already planned.
  • 8minutenergy said it will pursue projects in strong solar markets, including Texas, the Southeast and California, where the company maintains more than 700 MW in operational generation assets.

Dive Insight:

As battery costs decline and new control technology allows more value to be captured, the storage sector is expected to undergo rapid growth. 

8minutenergy points out that its move "aligns with industry forecasts," including GTM Research estimates predicting U.S. energy storage capacity will reach 655 MW in 2018 and exceed 2 GW in 2021.

The company, already the largest independent renewables developer in the country, is working with manufacturers to offer lithium-ion and flow batteries, flywheels, and other storage resources. And 8minutenergy said it has also expanded its existing solar research facility by adding energy storage facilities to test performance innovations and grid balancing capabilities.

"We are working on storage solutions that are already cost-competitive across the board, improve energy yield, and maximize renewable incentives. Now with fully dispatchable renewable energy, we can complement any existing utility portfolio," said 8minutenergy Vice President of Storage Integration Carl Stills.

8minutenergy boasts that members of its team have "initiated and/or managed" several of the country's largest energy storage projects, including a 30 MW lithium-ion energy storage project in the western U.S., and the first utility-scale wind and storage project in Hawaii.

In April, the company announced it had received approval on a power purchase agreement to develop the 90 MW (AC) Springbok 3 Solar Farm, located in Kern County, Calif. 8minutenergy signed the Springbok 3 PPA with the Southern California Public Power Authority on behalf of its participating member, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

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Filed Under: Solar & Renewables Energy Storage Regulation & Policy Corporate News
Top image credit: AES Energy Storage