Shifting peak loads can benefit the electric grid by reducing the need for investments in additional capacity and peaking units, and by reducing the likelihood of shortages during peak periods, according to Resolution E-4586. It also states the “implementation of the permanent load shifting program shall commence 90 days from the issuance of this resolution.”
As defined by the resolution, PLS refers to the shifting of energy usage from one period of time to another on a recurring basis, often by storing energy produced during off-peak hours and using the energy during peak hours to support loads. Examples of PLS technologies include thermal energy storage. According to the state, the utilization of energy storage would increase the reliability of California’s power grid, enable a smarter grid with two-way flow of electricity, create between 5,000 and 10,000 jobs, increase the usefulness of renewable energy, reduce air pollution from greenhouse gas emissions and smog forming nitrogen oxides, and ultimately keep electricity prices lower than the alternative high costs of building new power plants and transmission lines. Thermal energy storage when sited at buildings also enables the building owner to capitalize on less expensive nighttime electricity.
“Energy storage is critical to creating a more reliable, efficient electrical grid, not only in California but also across the United States,” said Mark MacCracken, CEO of CALMAC. “Thermal energy storage is a proven PLS technology and the first step in truly creating a smart grid. Energy storage simply separates when energy is created (or collected) from when it is needed, in this case shifting a building’s energy demand from on-peak to off-peak times. Take our ice storage technology for example. Although it is unnoticed by the building’s occupants, its incorporation allows buildings to stay cool using ice created and stored the night before, while simultaneously decreasing cooling costs and reducing both source energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. I applaud the leaders in California for passing Resolution E-4586 as it is a significant step forward.”
Within the next three months Pacific Gas & Electric Co., San Diego Gas & Electric Co., and Southern California Edison Co. should be announcing their PLS programs. The programs are open to all qualified residential, commercial, agricultural, Community Choice Aggregation and Direct Access customers. Participants would receive a one-time financial incentive to help offset the cost of initial implementation of PLS technologies. The proposed incentive for moving electric loads from the peak electric rate periods is $875 per kW shifted.
For more information about CALMAC Manufacturing Corp., visit www.calmac.com.
Publication date: 6/17/2013