Massachusetts Electricity Sector Projects
New England Clean Energy Connect, Ameresco Five Massachusetts Solar Projects, Bay State Battery Storage And Offshore Wind Pairing, Tesla's 48 Mwh Energy Storage System – Island Of Nantucket, MA, and Holyoke Gas & Electric 3/6 Megawatt Storage System are examples of electricity sector projects where there has either been significant smart grid development or utilities that have invested in non-wires alternatives in Massachusetts.
1. NEW ENGLAND CLEAN ENERGY CONNECT
- The New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC) is a project seeking to deliver clean, affordable, and reliable energy to the State of Massachusetts. The projects will deliver up to 1,200 MW of clean hydropower capable of reducing carbon emissions annually in the state by 3.1 million metric tons – the equivalent of taking 660,000 cars off the road.
- NECEC will reduce electricity costs by $3.9 billion over the next 20 years allowing Massachusetts residents to save over $150 million in electricity costs.
- The project will deliver sufficient clean electricity for up to 1.2 million New England homes, and shield consumers against energy price spikes during peak demand in summer and winter.
- Overall, the project will reduce energy costs for businesses, which will increase Massachusetts’ Gross Domestic Product by over $243 million annually and provide full-time jobs for approximately 2,000 individuals.
2. AMERESCO FIVE MASSACHUSETTS SOLAR PROJECTS
- Ameresco Inc., a comprehensive energy efficiency and renewable energy company seeks to design, construct, finance, own and operate solar power systems on five facilities in Massachusetts.
- The project is set to run for 20 years and includes provisions for Ameresco to purchase power at discounted rates and provide solar-generated electricity at a discount to their current electricity bills.
- The five solar facilities will output an estimated 560 kW of electricity capacity and 700,000 kWh of annual electric energy. The projects will be installed on the rooftops of two Massport Logan Airport terminals, Bridgewater State College, Worcester State College, and the Canton Housing Authority.
- The project parts will be locally sourced from various companies including Solectria in Lawrence, Massachusetts.
3. BAY STATE BATTERY STORAGE AND OFFSHORE WIND PAIRING
- Bay State Wind, a 50-50 partnership company between Ørsted and Eversource, aims to collaborate with Massachusetts-based NEC Energy Solutions to develop an energy storage solution for its 800MW wind / 55 MW – 110 MWh energy storage combined project.
- The project expands Bay State Wind’s effort to facilitate and promote energy storage in Massachusetts. The collaboration will also strengthen the supply chain in the entire state, generate jobs, and establish Massachusetts as a leader in renewable energy.
- The project will further develop flexible battery storage solutions to help the region overcome winter energy issues by delivering energy when it is needed most, which will in turn help to reduce winter peak energy prices and control price volatility.
- Moreover, the robust battery storage system will support Massachusetts’ small businesses and consumers’ energy needs by ensuring a steady supply of energy to reduce high-demand energy spikes.
4. TESLA'S 48 MWH ENERGY STORAGE SYSTEM – ISLAND OF NANTUCKET, MA
- Tesla recently installed a 48 MWh energy storage system to power the island of Nantucket, Massachusetts.
- The installation follows rising population and increasing demand for energy, forcing smart innovations in implementing clean energy solutions that can supply more energy for less money.
- Previously, the island of 10,000+ residents depended on energy sourced from the mainland system on Cape Cod via submarine cables and a diesel powered backup generator.
- Tesla’s 6 MW/48 MWh battery energy storage system also deters infrastructure upgrades as it can delay the need for a third transmission cable by 15-20 years.
- A total of 200 batteries make up the 48 MWh system, making it one of Tesla’s mega energy storage systems. Tesla’s storage system is also helping to restore power to Puerto Rico and is being used by an Australian-based solar and wind energy farm.
5. HOLYOKE GAS & ELECTRIC 3/6 MEGAWATT STORAGE SYSTEM
- Holyoke Gas & Electric, a local utility in Massachusetts initiated a 3MW/6MWh battery storage system linked to an existing 5.8MW solar facility in western Massachusetts to help reduce its peak load.
- Green Charge, an ENGIE NA subsidiary, will run the storage system that will store energy from Mt. Tom solar facility. The storage system will decrease local and regional peak loads.
- The project’s objectives include reducing demand charges and stabilizing electric rates of a peak load of about 75 MW
- With the state focused on delivering up to 200 MWh by January 1, 2020, such projects are examples of investments in non-wires alternatives to stabilize peak loads and deliver affordable and reliable clean energy.
To find examples of electricity sector projects where there has either been significant smart grid development or utilities that have invested in non-wires alternatives in Massachusetts, we started by examining government reports on smart energy development policies. We hoped to identify the core areas that the state of Massachusetts focuses on regarding the modernization of electric utilities. Next, we focused on exploring reports by key industry players. Further, we explored reports by energy utilities serving the region, in which, we found that most of them are investor-owned utilities, such as National Grid, Ameresco Inc., The Narragansett Electric Company, Holyoke Gas and Electric, NEC Energy Solutions, and Eversource. These utilities featured reports and case studies examples of mega projects, particularly in the energy storage segment, which the state of Massachusetts seems to focus on. We also explored external business reports such as Business Wire and science and technology news vendors like Futurism. Overall, these sources featured numerous projects on significant smart grid development or utilities that have invested in non-wires alternatives in Massachusetts. However, we only focused on private sector projects and excluded municipal, regional, or government focused smart energy projects.