The Responsibility Energy Storage Companies Have to Help California Meet 50% Renewable Energy by 2030

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The leaders of the world are gathering in Paris this week to determine how to mitigate global climate change at the COP21 Forum. Forum participants include governments, intergovernmental organizations, UN agencies, NGOs and industries all focused on creating legally binding reductions in greenhouse gases across the globe. The U.S. has been and remains at the forefront of establishing aggressive mandates to curb greenhouse gases and California is leading the charge.

As a country we support businesses creating innovative technologies that enable us to do so and California is CODA Energy’s home base – this is where the company is headquartered, where business is done and where it is helping shape policy because for us cleaning up the environment starts at home. California is also one of the toughest in the country when it comes to regulatory and environmental mandates. This is most evident with what is touted as the country’s most far-reaching climate change bill – SB 350 – which increases California’s commitment to reaching 50% renewable energy and a 50% increase in energy efficiency in buildings by 2030. The bill also calls for greater deployment of mandated energy storage resources, underscoring the responsibility that companies like CODA now have to continue innovating technologies that address climate change.

As an expert in complex energy solutions well beyond basic peak shaving, CODA continues to be involved at the legislative level – actively engaging state regulators to help shape California’s energy policy goals and regulations. CODA has earned a reputation as a knowledgeable representative and is regularly invited to sit down with decision-makers on behalf of the energy storage industry. Our team is working to ensure that the foundation of relevant policies is realistic to implement and based on the true potential of energy storage. Additionally CODA is focused on adequately addressing energy storage safety standards with the DOE and Sandia Labs, encouraging the continuation of the Self Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) to support the adoption of new technologies and how we can accurately measure carbon emissions in relation to energy storage.

Meeting California’s energy and environmental policy goals will require changes to existing policy and the integration of distributed energy resources (DER) to the utility grid. CODA is committed to aligning the energy storage industry’s strategy with renewable goals to create an actionable and mutually beneficial plan. Approaching the electric system holistically, CODA is focusing on the common interests of all stakeholders by addressing the “low hanging fruit” and taking intermediate steps towards solving the longer-term issues. This involves participation as a party in the California Public Utility Commission’s (CPUC) Rule 21 proceedings where the three Investor Owned Utilities (IOU) are meeting with developers of clean technologies to streamline connection to the grid.

Further, the CPUC has ordered a rulemaking (OIR – R.15-03-011) proceeding to evaluate the safety and procurement of energy storage throughout California to meet the Governor’s Renewable Portfolio Goals. CODA was enlisted to facilitate workshop at a recent OIR meeting. CODA also continues to provide expertise and education on behind-the-meter safety practices and best practices of safety communication to the CPUC, the National Fire Protection Association and various government agencies, underscoring the importance of reliability and ease-of-implementation to the success of more mainstream energy storage deployment. The goal is to avoid overly burdensome regulations and enable all stakeholders to benefit.

Lastly, CODA is committed to bringing down peak demand to all of our commercial and industrial customers through SGIP funding of energy storage systems. Therefore, ensuring that only top performing technologies are included in the SGIP program through education and discussion with Commissioners and State Regulators.

The quotes below sum up the importance of this moment for energy storage, and we are excited to be playing a pivotal role in how it all shakes out.

“SB 350 builds on California’s historic commitment to lead the world in the fight against climate change and build a healthy and livable planet for our children and grandchildren,” said California Senate President pro and bill author Tempore Kevin de León. “Energy storage will play a vital role in our transition to a clean energy economy, enabling a larger role for renewable power in both our electricity and transportation sectors.”

“This bill is the biggest thing to happen to the energy storage industry this year,” said Janice Lin, Managing Partner of Strategen Consulting and Chair of Energy Storage North America. “It appropriately recognizes the game-changing role energy storage can play in helping to integrate renewable energy and ensure cost-effective grid reliability.”