— Solar Power, High-Technology Development Share $25M Financial Boost —
Albany, NY—09/13/12—The New York State Public Service Commission (Commission) today approved the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s request to reallocate more than $25 million in uncommitted System Benefits Charge (SBC) funds for new Technology and Market Development (T&MD) portfolio initiatives, including a new solar photovoltaic program, an initiative to develop technologically advanced energy storage systems, and an initiative to support high-performance buildings.
“We must continue to find ways both to reduce demand on our electric and natural gas grids while enhancing the ability of the infrastructure to handle the loads that remain in an optimal fashion,” said Commission Chairman Garry Brown. “The innovative programs being funded today will address those twin imperatives head on.”
With the Commission’s decision, NYSERDA will be allowed to utilize uncommitted SBC funds for three new initiatives:
- $10 million to develop and implement programs to reduce the balance-of-system costs for solar photovoltaic (PV) installations and to support priority PV technology development;
- $10 million to support research on an energy storage/smart grid hub, including efforts tosecure U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) funding for the establishment of an energy storage research hub in New York; and
- $5.76 million to expand the Advanced Buildings Program within the T&MD portfolio,including $3 million for the Advanced Buildings Consortium and $2.76 million for a deep energy savings initiative in commercial buildings.
The NY-Sun Initiative announced by Governor Cuomo will significantly increase solar PV installations in New York while protecting ratepayers by keeping costs under control. As part of the NY-Sun initiative, the Commission will make $10 million available to develop and implement programs to reduce the “balance of system” (BOS) costs of solar PV installations.BOS costs constitute approximately half the total cost of an installation and include labor, design, permitting and interconnection, and the cost of the inverter. Energy storage and smart grid advancements support Governor Cuomo’s ongoing Energy Highway initiative designed to upgrade and modernize New York State’s electric power system.
To help support the Energy Highway initiative, the Commission is making the $10 million available to support research on an energy storage/smart grid hub. Ultimately, the hub could serve as a feeder to the Renewable Portfolio Standard or future renewable initiatives. Creation of a New York hub would help advance New York’s Energy Highway initiative. It would also demonstrate New York’s commitment to become a national leader in the energy storage and smart grid technology sectors, allow the state to capitalize on its academic, industrial, and governmental resources in the energy storage and smart grid sectors, and potentially attract new technology and suppliers as the clean energy manufacturing sector grows.
Finally, $5.76 million in funding will go toward improving the energy efficiency of the state’s commercial buildings, including $3 million to conduct targeted and high priority technology development and demonstration projects and to help accelerate the introduction of emerging technology into New York markets, ultimately leading to achievement of higher energy and environmental performance in the New York building stock. The remainder will be used to demonstrate the feasibility of efforts to achieve up to 40 percent or more energy efficiency savings in existing buildings and 40 percent or more energy savings in new construction.
The Commission’s decision today, when issued, may be obtained by going to the Commission Documents section of the Commission’s Web site at www.dps.ny.gov and entering Case Number 10-M-0457 in the input box labeled "Search for Case/Matter Number". Many libraries offer free Internet access. Commission orders may also be obtained from the Commission’s Files Office, 14th floor, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12223 (518-474-2500).