More than 41 MW of energy storage was deployed nationally in second quarter

The United States deployed 41.2 MW of energy storage in the second quarter of 2016, an increase of 126% over the first quarter of the year, according to data released Sept. 7.

Growth in the fledgling industry was highlighted in the latest U.S. Energy Storage Monitor, a quarterly publication from GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association (ESA).

There was 18.3 MW of energy storage brought online during the first quarter, according to the report. The report also said there were $74m in energy storage investment during the second quarter.

Year-over-year, energy storage deployments were up just 1%, but energy storage is being spread to more locations, according to the quarterly publication.

Behind-the-meter deployments grew 66% year-over-year GTM Research forecasts 287 MW of energy storage in 2016. There were 226 MW deployed in 2015 and 65 MW in 2014, according to the report.

The storage report also said that recent commitments from the Obama administration should eventually result in 1.3 GW of deployments and $1bn in investment, officials predict in the storage report.

The largest front-of-the-meter project was not deployed in either PJM territory or California, the perennially leading markets, but rather in the Midcontinent ISO (MISO) territory in Indiana.

In fact, PJM territory and California together accounted for only 35% of the megawatt capacity and 47% of megawatt-hour (MWh) capacity deployed in the quarter, their lowest contribution in more than three years, according to the Storage Monitor.

By the end of the year, however, California will reclaim its position as the nation’s top storage market, as new storage projects are slated to be installed in record time to help ease Aliso Canyon-related capacity issues in Southern California, according to the report.

“This quarter marked several storage firsts, such as the first grid-scale project in MISO and a large solar-plus-storage at a municipal utility in Ohio,” said Ravi Manghani, GTM Research’s director of energy storage. “Additionally, the industry received a big boost from the White House, with recently announced public and private commitments that will result in 1.3 gigawatts of new storage deployments and, more importantly, spur a billion dollars in storage investments,” Manghani said.

The federal government is committing to increasing its storage and microgrid capacity through programs that will make federal and military bases more resilient and provide funding for microgrids in rural communities, GTM notes in the report.

The U.S. Navy has committed to three energy storage projects, including a 50 MW to 100 MW grid-scale storage project at Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach in California.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.