- Investor-owned utilities in New York must deploy at least two energy storage systems by the end of 2018, pursuant to an order issued Thursday by the state's Public Service Commission.
- Storage systems have become so affordable and reliable that the commission said utilities should be deploying them as part of their "normal course of business."
- It was a landmark day for energy policy in New York: Regulators also approved a new compensation structure for distributed energy resources, and published new guidance for utilities in developing their distributed system implementation plans.
Energy storage has become so reliable and affordable that New York regulators want to see utilities rolling out capacity as part of their everyday operations.
“With advances in energy storage technologies, utilities should be using energy storage as part of their normal course of business,” Commission Chair Audrey Zibelman said in a statement. “Now is the time to determine the best locations, technologies, and uses for energy storage, and today’s order will accelerate the utilities’ deployment of this technology.”
According to the order, by the end of next year each individual utility must have energy storage projects "deployed and operating at no fewer than two separate distribution substations or feeders.” Additionally, the projects should address at least two grid functions, such as boosting generating capacity of a substation or reducing peak load when demand is highest.
Additionally, the order requires that utilities push the development of distributed energy resources, and directs utilities to do more to create online portals to provide information to help DER developers. Those improvements must include advances to hosting capacity maps and similar information.
Yesterday was a big day for energy policy in New York. As part of the state's Reforming the Energy Vision proceeding, utility regulators issued an order to develop a new pricing mechanism, known as the Value Stack, to provide more accurate compensation levels for distributed energy resources (DER).
The first phase establishes more granular valuation and compensation for distributed generation and sets up broader changes to move away from net energy metering.
Regulators also issued an order Thursday offering guidance to utilities on development of their distributed system implementation plans, including directives for distribution hosting capacity, interconnection portals, non-wires alternatives and energy storage, among other topics. The DSIPs are designed to modernize utility distribution systems to better integrate distributed resources.