The California Independent System Operator has approved three reliability improvements for storage management that are set to take effect this summer when extreme heat could cause a spike in demand.
Utilities and states are preparing for a world with less available water and turning more to wind and solar, demand response, energy storage and improved grid connections. That planning has helped Western states keep the lights on this summer even in severe drought conditions.
A $3 billion pumped-water energy storage project has been proposed along Isabella Lake that would help even out power delivery from California solar and wind farms at a volume and longevity dwarfing the large battery installations envisioned for eastern Kern.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is reviewing a Walnut engineering company’s plan to create a new reservoir above the lake then use pumps and underground pipes to turn it into a rechargeable dam and hydroelectric generator putting out a whopping 2,000 megawatts of power for up to 12 hours at a time.
The California Independent System Operator is bracing for rolling outages through Wednesday, after a record-breaking heatwave in the Western U.S. strained energy supplies and necessitated power shut-offs that affected hundreds of thousands of customers over the weekend.