ENGIE North America and Holyoke Gas & Electric (HG&E) announced Massachusetts' largest utility-scale energy storage system (ESS) during a ceremony at the Mt. Tom Solar Array on September 25, 2018. ENGIE Storage Services (formerly Green Charge Networks) will operate the three-megawatt GridSynergy™ system, which will be fully integrated into the largest community solar project in the state, in Holyoke adjacent to the former Mt. Tom Power Station.
"HG&E is excited to expand its relationship with ENGIE through the integration of this energy storage system (ESS) with the existing large-scale community solar array at Mt. Tom,” said James Lavelle, HG&E's Manager. “HG&E, and its ratepayers, will receive significant value, as this battery can respond instantaneously to relieve stress on the power grid and help stabilize costs during periods of peak demand or volatile pricing.”
Electricity produced from the Mt. Tom 5.76 MW-DC solar farm will be stored in the ESS and isolated from, but interconnected to, HG&E's electric grid. This stored power will be called upon during local and regional peak load periods to cost-effectively satisfy demand, while stabilizing utility costs and demand charges for customers. Demand charges are incurred for electricity and capacity taken from the power grid and used during peak demand periods.
“This project is the perfect illustration of energy transformation in action; affordable, clean energy replacing traditional fossil fuel power generation,” said ENGIE NA President and CEO Frank Demaille. “Solar energy, optimized by energy storage, is key to a low-carbon, low-cost energy future.”
“It's been gratifying to see the Mt. Tom property transform over the last few years,” said Mayor Alex Morse. “This state of the art battery storage system enhances our ability to increase Holyoke's renewable energy portfolio, and we are hopeful that the Mt. Tom Energy Storage project will be the first of many storage projects that help us advance our environmental objectives.”
While still an emerging energy innovation in Massachusetts, worldwide energy storage is rapidly being considered as a key resource that optimizes clean, renewable energy.