Energy storage technologies have a crucial role to play in enabling the transition to a low-carbon economy. Yet despite significant growth of the energy storage market in recent years, the process of connecting this technology to the electric grid remains complex and unclear in many states.
BATRIES (Building A Technically Reliable Interconnection Evolution for Storage) will address the barriers to storage interconnection and help pave the way for rapid deployment of storage on the distribution grid. This project is led by IREC with support from the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office.
The project team will engage and garner input from a broad cross-section of experts from utilities, national laboratories, and the clean energy industry. This will inform the development of a nationally applicable Toolkit & Guidance for the Interconnection of Energy Storage and Solar + Storage.
The Toolkit will consist of solutions and tools that are well-vetted, technically robust, and applicable across a diversity of states and markets. IREC and its partners will conduct extensive training and educational outreach to drive adoption of these solutions in a majority of states.
Project Activities and Timeline
In Year 1, which ended March 2021, the project partners identified and prioritized key challenges in the interconnection process for energy storage and solar-plus-storage projects. The project team held meetings and workshops with technical experts, utilities, solar and storage industry representatives, and other stakeholders to vet the list of challenges and to identify potential solutions. The project team used stakeholder feedback to inform the creation of a roadmap document which defines the scope and contents that will be included in the Toolkit.
In Year 2, IREC and partners are developing a first-of-its-kind, nationally applicable Toolkit of solutions and guidance to address the identified barriers to grid connection of energy storage and solar-plus-storage projects.
Year 3 will focus on outreach and training to support adoption of the solutions in the Toolkit. The team will increase national awareness and utilization of the Toolkit by educating and training state regulators, utility staff, distributed energy resources (DER) industry stakeholders, and others about the Toolkit.
By the project’s end, the team will have educated and trained regulators and utilities in at least 35 states about the project and Toolkit. Our goal is that the majority of state regulatory commissions and utility engineers will use the Toolkit as a reference for the adoption and implementation of recommended interconnection practices and solutions.
This material is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) under the Solar Energy and Technologies Office Award Number DE-DE-EE0009002.0001. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Department of Energy or the United States Government.
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