November 1, 2019

Resilience, Resources, and Planning: Procuring Energy Storage in IRPs

Kelly Speakes-Backman, CEO

Utilities and their regulators are dramatically increasing their inclusion of energy storage in Integrated Resource Portfolio (IRP) planning to accommodate newly economic clean energies, increasingly attractive energy storage costs and services, and the need for heightened resilience planning. By December 2018, 22 utilities have planned for nearly 5 gigawatts (GW) of storage in their IRPs, with 33 GW more storage contracted in that year alone.

But where does storage fit in an IRP, in the generation planning or load-modifying planning side? How should planners prioritize storage’s many potential services (capacity, transmission alternative, frequency regulation, demand management, and so on) in the near term and long terms of a 25-year asset?  And how should storage services factor into resilience planning for shorter-duration needs, such as those California is facing this Fall?  Multiple applications for storage projects, including resource adequacy and ancillary services, require new approaches to analyzing energy storage investment options in integrated resource plans.

On November 13-14, the U.S. Energy Storage Association and Brattle Group are hosting a timely seminar in Atlanta, Georgia on all aspects of evaluating energy storage technologies, applications, and value in IRPs. Participants will review storage cost trends, emerging regulatory and market structures, lessons learned from utility modeling and applications, quantifying the value of storage in risk management, and other core IRP topics.  

Given the “new normal” of disaster planning from wildfires or hurricanes, coupled with the numerous power plant retirements on the horizon, there has never been a better time to ensure that energy storage investment options are being evaluated effectively. Space at the workshop is limited, so register now for this critically important planning discussion.

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