Incorporating energy storage assumptions into utility system planning processes results in a more resilient, efficient, sustainable, and affordable electricity grid. With this seminar, utilities, regulators, and other stakeholders will learn about new energy storage modeling and planning techniques being incorporated into grid systems around the country to ensure cost effective procurement and reliable operations.

The U.S. Energy Storage Association (ESA) and Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) hosted an in-depth virtual seminar on energy storage planning, held December 2-3, 2020, Getting Started with Energy Storage: The Essential Guide for Planning, Analyzing, Procuring and Communicating.

This seminar consisted of four 2.5-hour modules presented over two days, beginning at 12:00 noon ET, running to 5:30 ET (the program includes a 30-minute break between modules).  Each module was split into two to three shorter sessions, with each session featuring different presenters.

ESA will present similar seminars in 2021. Check back for more information.

Wednesday, December 2 12:00 PM ET – 2:30 PM ET

Module 1: Approaches & Frameworks

Module 1 is specifically designed for planners considering storage as a versatile and flexible investment, and decisionmakers who are contemplating storage as a strategic investment.

Learning Objectives: Attendees will appreciate the wide range of energy storage applications and use cases; understand how a specific need can influence the technology chosen; and learn how storage relates to the overarching objectives and targets expressed in utility integrated resource plans and state clean energy policies. 


  • Marc Chupka, ESA
  • Roger Leuken, The Brattle Group
  • Jeremy Twitchell, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)

Download the Module 1 agenda.

Wednesday, December 2 3:00 PM ET – 5:30 PM ET

Module 2: Methods & Models

Module 2 is specifically designed for analysts who are responsible for executing studies to determine the value of alternative resource options – including storage – using advanced analytic tools.

Learning Objectives:  Attendees will understand the tool kit necessary to determine the value of storage across various use cases, such as providing peaking capacity or ancillary services in wholesale markets, substituting for transmission, deferring distribution investments and managing load impacts.  


  • Kevin Carden, Astrape Consulting
  • Zachary Kuznar, Duke Energy
  • Dr. Brent Nelson, Ascend Analytics
  • Dr. Allison Weis, Ascend Analytics
  • Giovanni Damato, EPRI

Download the Module 2 agenda.

Thursday, December 3 12:00 PM ET – 2:30 PM ET

Module 3: Procuring Storage

Module 3 is specifically designed for procurement officials, risk management officers, and legal staff to learn the buyer’s and seller’s perspective on the procurement process; from RFPs, the development cycle, contracting, and end-of-life responsibilities. 

Learning Objectives: Attendees will understand procurement processes from both the user (e.g., utility) side as well as the developer perspective; examine RFPs, development processes, best practices for construction and operation contracts, explore innovative contractual alternatives to ownership, and how to build in end-of-life responsibilities.


  • Erin Minear, EPRI
  • Alan Grosse, FlexGen
  • Bill Holmes, K&L Gates

Download the Module 3 agenda.

Thursday, December 3 3:00 PM ET – 5:30 PM ET

Module 4: Communication & Education

Module 4 is specifically focused for regulators, government affairs, and communications professionals who are seeking effective tools to accurately convey the benefits of energy storage to stakeholders.

Learning Objectives: Attendees will develop a vocabulary to describe the technical and economic characteristics of energy storage in an accessible and accurate way; learn how to convey the benefits and costs of increased reliance on storage and how energy storage fits into a broader organizational objective or advocacy position. 


  • Kelly Speakes-Backman, ESA
  • Karen Olesky, Nevada Public Utilities Commission
  • Polly Shaw, Shaw Consulting
  • Taite McDonald, Holland & Knight
  • Steven Goldman, Fluence
  • Roger Lin, LS Energy Solutions

Download the Module 4 agenda.

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