USA: Connecticut beefs up energy storage incentives to meet 1 GW goal by 2030

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  • Updates to Connecticut’s Energy Storage Incentives program, were released last week by the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority, which regulators claim will boost domestic customers adoption of energy storage.
  • Residential customers can now receive up to $16,000 in upfront incentives under the revised program, an increase from the previous maximum of $7,500, while low-income customers ‘ initial incentives were increased from $400 per kWh to $60/kWh. In contrast, customers in underserved communities now have access to $450 per kWh in upfront incentives, up from the previous $300.
  • According to legislation signed by Governor, Connecticut wants to install 1 GW of energy storage by the end of 2030. Additionally, the bill, SB 952, set time goals, such as the deployment of 650 MW of storage by the end of 2027 and a total of 300 MB by 2024.Connecticut beefs up energy storage incentives to meet 1 GW goal by 2030

Empowering Residential Adoption: Connecticut’s Enhanced Energy Storage Solutions Incentive Program

Connecticut’s Energy Storage Solutions incentive program received a significant boost with updates aimed at enhancing residential adoption and meeting ambitious deployment goals outlined in SB 952. Residential customers now qualify for increased upfront incentives of up to $16,000, with low-income and underserved communities seeing notable increases as well. Since its launch, the program has made strides, with corporate and industrial projects totaling 69 MW approved. Challenges persist, including the need for streamlined procedures and addressing potential waste issues. While higher incentives may drive enrollments, customer reluctance due to cost and grid reliability concerns remains. Regulators are optimistic about the program’s impact, especially in multi-family housing properties, where low-income incentives can support battery backup power access. Efforts to simplify processes and address customer concerns are crucial for maximizing participation and advancing Connecticut’s energy storage expansion toward its ambitious targets.

Advancing Energy Storage: Connecticut’s SB 952 Initiative and Residential Adoption Progress

In response to SB 952, the state’s Energy Storage Solutions initiative was introduced in 2022 with the goal of assisting personal, commercial, and commercial customers of Eversource and United Illuminating in deploying more behind-the-meter energy storage resources. The program is available through December 31, 2030.

The program offered residential customers incentives of up to $7,500 for a project at the time of its launch, or about $200 per kWh on average. Since the program’s launch in 2022, Eversource has received and approved about 30 corporate and industrial battery applications, totaling 69 MW, according to Amy Findlay, manager of demand response management, in an email.

” One of those batteries has finished construction, and the majority are still in development.” It’s still too early to fully realize any impact on the ground at this point, she continued.” We don’t expect that many more will come online before the end [of]  this year. There are many steps to advance a large I battery from the conception or application stages.

200 projects totaling 1.6 MW have been finished on the domestic front, according to her.

Expanded Incentives and Regulatory Adjustments

Customers can get even more support to deploy these systems thanks to the new, expanded incentives and the Federal Investment Tax Credit program, which gives solar and battery storage systems a 30% tax credit, according to Connecticut regulators.

Another modifications to the storage incentive program were approved by regulators. For instance, multi-family cheap housing properties can then take advantage of the program’s low-income incentive rate, which regulators hope will allow property owners to give tenants access to battery backup power. While it is not already a common problem in the state, they are even keeping an eye on the probable issue of solar panel and battery waste, noting that sooner rather than later it will need to be resolved. In addition,

According to Findlay, the higher incentives might boost domestic program enrollments. However, she added that other program changes that are being thought about, such as simplifying the application and enrollment procedures, are good to have a greater impact on customer participation in the program.

But, there are also significant obstacles to the state’s expansion of energy storage. For instance, Eversource hasn’t yet seen figures that accurately reflect high customer demand on the home side, according to Findlay.

Many customers might not see the value in investing in a battery that could cost tens of thousands of dollars due to the lack of time-of-use rates and the resilient and dependable electrical grid. She continued,” While there are always early adopters of new and innovative technologies, they don’t constitute the majority of customers.

The program’s incentives on the business and industrial side, however, are very good, she said,”but they remain expensive projects when considering supply chain constraints which can delay implementation.”

Viktor Musil

Victor Musil, pen name for Edouard Py, advocates for inclusive, people-centered city development. His work underscores the importance of ethical considerations and equitable access, shaping the discourse on urban innovation worldwide.

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