SaskPower’s first-ever utility-scale battery energy storage system will support their plans to lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Joel Cherry, spokesperson for SaskPower explains how the storage system will work.
“So what the battery energy storage system will do is provide storage for energy to help us balance our power system when we see demand spikes. Importantly, it’s going to help us to support our intermittent generation options. So those are wind and solar primarily.”
Cherry adds that over the coming years they will be adding more wind and solar to the grid. Right now they are set to add 685 megawatts of new wind capacity and 60 megawatts of solar in the next few years. So baseload power like natural gas, as long as a facility is running you are going to get power from it. Whereas renewables there’s zero-carbon but it’s only available to us and generating when conditions are right.
Cherry says many are not aware that we currently do not use batteries.
“Right now people might not realize that we don’t have batteries that are storing our power. If your lights are on where you are right now that’s because there is a facility generating power right this minute and sending it to you through a transmission system. And if that generating power went away, your power would go off.”
In addition, Cherry says having renewables on the system means that this battery storage is going to help them to accommodate that and keep the system stable.
The battery storage system will be installed in Regina at the Fleet Street substation and construction will start this summer and the project should be completed by the end of 2022.
“SaskPower has set a target to reduce carbon emissions at least 40% below 2005 levels by the year 2030. We are currently on track and looking to exceed that mark. Projects like this help to enable the use of renewables in our system and is one of a number of ways we are looking at reducing greenhouse gas emissions while continuing to provide reliable power for our customers.” says Cherry.