Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced that $40 million will be made available to support solar projects that integrate energy storage, accelerating progress toward the state’s goal of generating half of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2030.
"As we continue our aggressive pursuit of clean, renewable technologies, funding for projects like this will ensure New York remains at the forefront of the global fight against climate change," Cuomo said in a statement.
The NY-Sun program will make $40 million available in early November for the development of solar-plus-storage projects. This funding will accelerate the deployment of at least 50 megawatts of energy storage paired with solar, and reduce barriers to deployment of this clean energy technology.
Cory Mourer, CEO of Brooklyn-based Integrated Storage Technologies, tells Habitat that the new state incentives, coupled with recent innovations in battery technology, could be a major boost for solar energy in New York. “I think most new-construction solar projects will look to add energy storage,” Mourer says. “It will speed up the return on investment.”
By storing the electricity generated by its solar panels, a building can further trim its energy costs by using the stored electricity during times of heavy demand, such as hot summer afternoons, when Con Edison’s peak pricing boosts the cost of electricity drawn from the grid.
Last summer, we reported on a pioneering project run by Bright Power that is installing solar panels, a combined heat and power (cogen) system, and battery storage in an affordable apartment building in the Bronx. With $40 million available for solar-plus-storage systems, similar projects are sure to follow.
“Solar-plus-storage projects are a solution whose time has come, as they enhance the value of solar while making energy storage cleaner,” says John Rhodes, CEO of the state Department of Public Service. “This strategic investment will accelerate the development and deployment of a variety of energy-storage systems and spur future market innovation."
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