July 27 (Renewables Now) - Utility-scale energy storage projects developer esVolta has put a “heavy emphasis” on projects in California, which it sees as one of the leading energy storage markets in the US, but it is also actively advancing projects in other states, a company official told Renewables Now.
"Over the course of 2018, we’ve been very pleased to see a high level of utility procurement interest and activity for new energy storage projects across many US states from New York to California and in between. Each utilities’ procurement is specific to their own needs, but we’ve seen projects oriented toward local capacity needs, new or replacement peaking capacity, renewables integration, and transmission and distribution capex deferral," Randolph Mann, president of esVolta, told Renewables Now.
According to a recent report by GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association (ESA), the energy storage market in the US expanded by 27% year-on-year in 2017 with 431 MWh of new grid-connected energy storage capacity. This year, the expectations are for about 1,233 MWh of fresh grid-connected storage deployments.
Earlier this month, California-based esVolta was selected to install a 75-MW/300-MW lithium-ion battery facility for utility Pacific Gas and Electric Co (PG&E) at its home state. It intends to start on-site construction in the spring of 2020 and the Hummingbird facility is scheduled to become operational in late 2020.
Randolph Mann said the batteries for the project are expected to be supplied by Powin Energy Corp (OTCMKTS:PWON). The latter is a minority equity holder in esVolta and works with the company under a long-term strategic procurement arrangement.
Presently, esVolta is also developing in a 10-MW/40-MWh project in Santa Barbara, California, where it will install a battery storage facility under a long-term contract with Southern California Edison, while another project will see the delivery of a 6.5-MW/26-MWh system in Escondido, California, pursuant to a power purchase agreement (PPA) with San Diego Gas & Electric. Both projects are in the development phase, while the company has a pipeline of some 2,000 MWh of projects.