The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) authorized San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) to build three new energy storage facilities totaling 161MW/644MWh in order to provide the state with greater capacity to meet high energy demand on summer days and at night after solar power dissipates. Altogether, these new projects will be able to provide enough capacity to meet the energy needs of more than 100,000 homes for up to four hours. Like other energy storage projects owned and operated by SDG&E, these new facilities will be connected to the state energy market, meaning the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) will be able to dispatch them any time they are needed to balance demand and supply on the grid statewide.
“Investing in advanced technologies like energy storage is critical to advancing our state and region’s aggressive climate goals, including getting to net zero greenhouse gas emissions, with the added benefit of making the energy grid more resilient,” SDG&E Vice President of Energy Innovation Miguel Romero said. “Project by project, step by step, we are making progress toward a cleaner, safer and more reliable energy future.”
Battery storage works by capturing renewable resources like wind and solar when they are abundant during the day, then sending that energy back to the grid when it is needed.
The new facilities, which are slated to be completed in late 2022/early 2023, stemmed from the Emergency Reliability rulemaking proceeding under which the CPUC directed utilities to contract for additional capacity to bolster the grid. The projects are the latest of a series of energy storage investments SDG&E has been making. The company completed the Top Gun Energy Storage, a 30MW/120MWh lithium-ion battery system, last June. By March, SDG&E plans to begin commercial operation of another lithium-ion battery storage facility in Kearny Mesa, which will provide 20MW/80MWh. A third lithium-ion storage facility, 40MW/160MWh, is under construction in Fallbrook. By year end 2022, SDG&E expects to have 145MW of SDG&E-owned storage connected to the regional grid (the equivalent needed to serve about 94,000 homes for four hours).
SDG&E is an innovative San Diego-based energy company that provides clean, safe and reliable energy to better the lives of the people it serves in San Diego and southern Orange counties. The company is committed to creating a sustainable future by providing its electricity from renewable sources; modernizing natural gas pipelines; accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles; supporting numerous non-profit partners; and, investing in innovative technologies to ensure the reliable operation of the region’s infrastructure for generations to come. SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra (NYSE: SRE).