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Battery storage to replace retiring gas generators in Golden State

Mon, 11/19/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has granted approval for four energy storage projects— totalling 567.5MW/2,270MWh— which the Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) utility will use to replace retiring gas generators.

The four lithium-ion battery projects include a 300MW/1,200MWh system— billed as “the largest system of its kind in the world— to be provided by Vistra Energy and located on the site of the Moss Landing Power Plant, and a 182.5MW/730MWh system— which shall become the world’s second largest— to be provided by Tesla.

The Tesla system will be owned by PG&E, whereas the Vistra system, a 75MW/300MWh system from Hummingbird Energy Solutions, and a 10MW/40MWh system from mNOC, will all be owned by the developers.

These projects have been under consideration since June 2018, as the CPUC ordered PG&E to propose viable alternatives to gas generation.

The CPUC set targets for utilities to “procure more than 1.3GW of energy storage by 2020” as the Golden State progresses toward getting all of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2045, an objective that California governor Jerry Brown put into legislation in September of this year.

PG&E aims to have all four of these projects online by the end of 2020. The first project to be realised will be the mNOC system.

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