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New York Poised to Close Last Coal-fire Power Plant

LCG, December 4, 2019--The last operating coal-fired power plant in New York is moving toward closure shortly. Last month, Somerset Operating Company, a subsidiary of Riesling Power LLC, submitted a request to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to waive the state's required, 180-day notice to close the Somerset Station, allowing the facility to be retired on February 15, 2020. Closure is contingent on approvals by both NYSPSC and the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), which will evaluate if it will cause an adverse effect on grid reliability.

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Construction Commences on Enel’s Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota

Enel Green Power North America, Inc. (“EGPNA”), the US renewable energy company of the Enel Group, has started construction of the 299-MW Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota.

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Industry News

AES Plans to Construct 300-MW Battery Storage System in California

LCG, December 1, 2016--AES Corporation plans to construct a 300-MW battery storage system at its existing Southland Energy, LLC (AES) Alamitos Generating Station within the City of Long Beach, California. The proposed Alamitos Generating Station Battery Energy Storage System would provide local area capacity for electrical system reliability and flexibility. According to AES, the proposed facility would be the largest battery energy storage system (BESS) in the world. Construction is proposed to commence in 2019, with the facility operational in 2020.

The proposed BESS facility would provide electrical service for the local electric utility, SCE. The BESS would include three, 100-MW containment buildings that house lithium-ion batteries and other equipment (e.g., electrical controls and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) units). Each building would be 50 feet in height, 270 feet in length, and 165 feet in width and would be comprised of three levels: two battery storage levels separated by a mezzanine level.

AES filed a project document with the City of Long Beach in October, and the project schedule calls for a phased construction. The first building is scheduled to be completed in 2020, and it is expected the second would be completed in 2021 or early 2022, with the third completed in 2023. Overall, construction is proposed to commence in 2019, with completion of the first 100-MW battery containment building completed in late 2020 and commercial operation beginning the same year.

According to the document filed, the BESS provides flexibility to the electrical grid by storing energy produced at the Alamitos Generating Station during periods of oversupply, and discharging to the electrical grid during periods of high demand. A battery system can provide instantaneous response, as compared to a slower ramping rate of a traditional gas fired generation resource and can provide this response repeatedly in all hours. Energy storage speed of response actually reduces the total amount of reserve power needed to manage the grid effectively, providing savings and reliability benefits. The proposed project would help integrate renewables and reduce dependence on gas-fired generation and associated GHG and criteria air pollutant emissions.

Previously in August 2016, AES and San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) announced plans to proceed with two of AES??? lithium-ion BESS???s totaling 37.5 MW at sites in San Diego County, California. The announcements followed the approval by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) of the proposal by SDG&E to build the two new energy storage projects.

The CPUC directed Southern California electric utilities in May 2016 to accelerate the installation of new energy storage options to enhance regional energy reliability and enable the addition of more intermittent renewable energy resources. The two SDG&E-owned projects are scheduled to be operational by the end of January 2017. The CPUC requires SDG&E to procure a total of 165 MW of energy storage by 2020, to be operational by 2024.
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