CAISO’s Battery Storage Initiatives

CAISO recently published an article discussing lithium-ion battery storage capacity and its heightened publicity it has received from the public eye. According to the post, "no electrical grid in the country, if not the world, has integrated more battery storage onto its power system than the ISO over the past year." The California Public Utilities Commission intends to continue this trend; a draft concerning installed utility scale batteries is in the works, calling for more than a 600% increase of MW than what is currently being used by the year 2025. This initiative was fueled with a motive of supporting the advancement of a carbon-free electricity system.

With sizeable changes such as this, the ISO states new market requirements will need to be prepared and discussed by stakeholders including ISO engineers and storage industry officials. Those involved in the process will ensure market rules are followed, models and design documentation is handled appropriately, and the grid functionality is performing efficiently and as expected.

Gabe Mutaugh, the storage sector manager for CAISO's Market and Infrastructure Policy group states, “storage resources are different than traditional gas resources in that they do not generate from an external energy source.” Rather than doing so, he says, the storage resources take energy and inject it back into the grid at a later time which causes "leads to market design where dependencies between charging and discharging periods help to inform prices. This is quite different from traditional markets, where price formation is usually only based on current market supply and demand conditions.”

The future of storages resources is exciting; a recent example such as the new model, energy storage resource (ESR) model, is currently being proposed to the public by CAISO to base bid submissions on the state of charge values as opposed to a dispatch power. According to the article, this model would function using CAISO's software for both the day-ahead and real-time markets.

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