The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) and BYD Ltd. Corp. (BYD) announced a collaborative partnership to develop a grid-scale battery project for renewable energy storage. At a signing ceremony held this morning at the Downtown Marriott, LADWP General Manager Austin Beutner and BYD Senior Vice President Stella Li committed to develop the scope, schedule, budget, milestones and deliverables for a project, the first of its kind for the utility company.
"My administration is committed to overcoming today’s economic and environmental challenges, while taking advantage of new opportunities like international trade and cross-border investment," said Los Angeles Mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa. "This collaboration is one example of how Los Angeles is dedicated to pioneering innovative solutions."
The project will see LADWP and BYD develop the parameter and scope for a 5-10 megawatt power storage unit to be housed at Pine Tree Wind Farm, the utility's wind power facility in the Tehachapi Mountains. The storage unit, similar to a battery in effect, will improve LADWP’s power reliability and balance the integration of renewable wind and solar energy into the LADWP’s large generation portfolio. The partnership between LADWP and BYD aims to test, develop and ultimately demonstrate the feasibility of large-scale energy storage options for electric utilities across the Country. It is DWP’s final determination which project to pursue based on an evaluation of options and priorities.
“BYD is pleased to partner with the City of Los Angeles and the LADWP for these break-through Energy Storage Stations – this technology will allow L.A.’s solar and wind power to have a firm-capacity and make them ‘relevant’ to the grid allowing the City to reduce their dependence on other fossil-based sources of power generation”, said Stella Li, SVP of BYD.
"LADWP is the largest municipal water and power utility in the United States, serving over 4.1 million residents, and takes seriously its obligation to lead the fight against pollution in the Los Angeles basin, as well as the larger global warming concerns,” said Austin Beutner LADWP General Manager. "This project and partnership demonstrates our efforts to increase reliable renewable power sources in Los Angeles as part of our strong commitment to reducing the City's carbon footprint and increasing our supply of clean, green energy when it is needed most"
As of August 2010, about 2,400 LADWP commercial and residential customers have installed over 20 megawatts of solar photovoltaic capacity through the Department’s Solar Incentive Program, representing approximately 20,000 kilowatts and $100 million in incentive funding.
In August, the California Legislature passed AB 2514, landmark legislation to mandate the use of energy storage technologies by electric utilities. Under the legislation, publicly-owned utilities are required to comply by 2016. LADWP is on track to lead the Nation in Energy Storage as well. The Energy-Storage-Portfolio-Target for publicly-owned utilities will be set in 2013.