On June 16, 2016, the White House hosted a summit to highlight the nation’s emerging promise of energy storage and renewable energy. The event, Scaling Renewable Energy and Storage with Smart Meters announced several actions by the Federal Government, states and the private sector to increase both the deployment of energy storage, advanced grid technologies and renewable energy throughout the country. The White House Summit convened representatives of the states, local governments, energy and tech companies and federal government. Judith Johnson, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources was an invited participant. According to the announcement provided by the White House, the commitments by the participants, federal, state and private sector, will increase the amount of energy storage by 1.3 gigawatts in the next five years resulting in over $1 billion in new investments.
Of the commitments announced at the White House Summit by entities outside of the federal government, Massachusetts is releasing a study examining the benefits of storage and has a $10 million plan for demonstration projects. Green Mountain Power along with the Vermont Energy Efficiency Utility, Efficiency Vermont and the Vermont Energy Investment Corp. are piloting a community scale comprehensive energy transformation of Panton, Vermont.
The U.S. Green Building Council at the Summit announced its effort in conjunction with NASEO to sponsor two webinars this year to engage states and utilities on smart grid development using PEER, the first rating system for power system performance. This stakeholder engagement will create opportunities for states and utilities to advance innovative, flexible and affordable grids.
Several utilities including Duke Energy, Pacific Gas & Electric, Con Edison, Indianapolis Power & Light, Florida Power & Light, Portland General Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, and the Los Angeles Department of Power and Light pledged to develop storage projects.
The Department of Energy will be engaging in pilot projects and partnerships as well as releasing upcoming studies from the National Renewable Energy Lab on increased renewable energy in the Eastern Interconnection grid and the Lawrence Berkley National Lab on demand response in California.
Of particular interest to NASEO members, the U.S. Energy Information Administration announced a pilot project next year to measure end-use energy consumption in American households. Both the U.S. Department of Defense and the General Services Administration will explore opportunities for investments in renewable energy and energy storage on the federal facilities and bases under their jurisdiction.
The Administration highlighted efforts on energy storage and advanced grid deployment occurring in the states and the private sector. The President’s actions harnessed the abilities of the Federal departments and agencies to advance deployment of energy storage. These combined actions will dramatically enhance the electric grid of the future.