California PUC approves $1.226B SCE energy storage contract with Ameresco

With approval from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) granted last week, Southern California Edison (SCE) has been authorized to enter a $1.226 billion energy storage contract with Ameresco, Inc. that will cover engineering, procurement, construction, and maintenance.

In all, the agreement will provide for 537.5 MW to be sited at three existing SCE substations. This effort to bolster summer energy reliability and clean energy will consist of: 225 MW at Springvale Substation in Big Creek-Ventura, 200 MW at Hinson Substation in the Los Angeles Basin, and 112.5 MW at Etiwanda Substation in the Los Angeles Basin.

“Our Decision today rolls out key storage resources for local reliability during net peak and complements the portfolio of strategies adopted by the CPUC this winter in preparation for summer 2022,” Commissioner Genevieve Shiroma said.

CPUC had previously established a preference for energy storage amid guidance to investor-owned utilities to procure incremental capacity beyond the current 15 percent resource adequacy planning reserve margin. Such margins will provide for peak and net peak demand in 2021 and 2022. However, the Commission has been moving at speed since July 30, owing to an Emergency Proclamation from Gov. Gavin Newsom, which encouraged it to accelerate plans for clean energy and storage projects and mitigate risks from capacity shortages while increasing the availability of carbon-free energy throughout the day.

Chris Galford

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