Look to New York next year for release of an energy storage roadmap by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and an energy storage goal set by state regulators.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an energy storage bill (A6571) in late November, following its passage by the Senate in June and earlier by the Assembly. The bill calls for the Public Service Commission (PSC) to establish energy storage targets by 2030, in consultation with NYSERDA and the Long Island Power Authority.
The law puts New York in league with a handful of states, among them California, Massachusetts and Oregon, that are setting goals or mandates for energy storage.
But first the new law is likely to undergo almost immediate amendment. Upon signing the bill, Cuomo also issued a memo saying that he had secured an agreement with lawmakers to make changes in the bill in the upcoming session.
Of concern is language that the memo says appears inconsistent with the state’s Reforming the Energy Vision, New York’s massive policy shift meant to decentralize the grid through market mechanisms. The bill also creates “fiscal burdens on state entities that should be addressed through the annual budget negotiations,” the memo says.
The end result is expected to be an energy storage goal that acts as signal for the industry and not a mandate that utilities procure a specified amount of the resource, which is California’s approach. Cuomo’s team sees a goal as more in line with REV’s market approach.
The deadline for establishing the plan also is expected to change. The current bill requires action by Jan. 1, 2018; the new bill is expected to give the commission until the end of 2018 set the goal and accompanying policy.
The roadmap will quantify the value energy storage can bring to the grid. “I think that will serve as the analytic statement for kicking off the public service commission deliberation,” said Alicia Barton, NYSERDA’s president and CEO.
NYSERDA hopes to complete the energy storage roadmap in the first quarter of 2018.
Barton said that the energy storage goal could lead to new opportunities for microgrids, in addition to those already arising out of NY Prize, a $40 million program for community microgrids. Many new microgrids include energy storage.
“We think that 2018 is going to be an exciting year for the energy storage conversation in New York,” Barton said. “This legislation sets a strong, high level signal. And now we are going to turn to the work of implementing details.”
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