IESO issues energy storage draft RFP

The Independent Electricity System Operator in Ontario posted draft documents for the second phase of an energy storage Request for Proposals on Friday.

Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) on Friday announced the issue of draft documents for a Request for Proposals (RFP) to complete the second phase of a two-phase process of procurement of up to 50 megawatts (MW) of energy storage in the province.

The RFP was issued in accordance with Ontario's 2013 Long Term Energy Plan (LTEP), which calls for increased investment in renewables, energy storage and other alternative power assets.

In the project's first phase, the IESO procured 33.54MW of energy storage from five companies in the form of 12 separate projects “to provide ancillary services to support increased reliability and efficiency of the grid”. The first of the projects will come online before the end of Q3 2016, according to the IESO website.

During the second phase, 16.46MW more is to be developed “from a diversity of energy storage technologies that can provide capacity services, encompassing a spectrum of performance characteristics, and providing ratepayer value through the time-shifting of energy consumption and production,” according to a related release.

The IESO believes that through the use of this expanded energy storage infrastructure, it can store energy during times of high production and low consumption so that it is available at costs much lower than typical peak energy pricing.

There are 15 qualified applicants for the project, all of whom have been invited to a technical information session on April 28. The question and comment period will remain open until May 8 on the draft documents, which include an RFP and a draft energy storage facility agreement.

The final draft of the RFP and the facility agreement will be released on May 28, with individual information sessions for qualified investors scheduled to take place June 9-11.

The deadline for procurement submission is July 3. IESO plans to announce selected proposals sometime in August.