North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives today announces the planned installation of cutting-edge battery energy storage technology in 10 communities across rural North Carolina. The batteries will be sited at electric cooperative substations, adding local energy resources in communities for enhanced grid infrastructure resilience and reliability for co-op consumer-members.
The batteries are being engineered and constructed by North Carolina-based FlexGen, the second largest energy storage technology company in the nation and a leader in designing energy storage solutions that further the ongoing evolution in the energy industry.
Collectively, the 10 battery projects will provide 40 MWs of power and will be charged when demand for electricity is low and discharged during moments of peak demand. This not only enhances electric reliability but is expected to provide cost savings over the lifetime of the batteries. Because cooperatives are not-for-profit, at-cost energy providers, co-op members will benefit from those savings.
The batteries will be located at or near:
- Bolivia, N.C. with Brunswick Electric
- Maysville, N.C. with Carteret-Craven Electric Cooperative
- Lillington, N.C. with Central Electric
- Rocky Point, N.C. with Four County EMC
- Hubert, N.C. with Jones-Onslow EMC
- Rockingham, N.C. with Pee Dee Electric
- Asheboro, N.C. with Randolph EMC
- Fayetteville, N.C. with South River EMC
- Goldsboro, N.C. with Tri-County EMC
- Wake Forest, N.C. with Wake Electric
“Energy storage technology enables North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives to enhance reliability and achieve cost savings that will benefit our consumer-members in rural North Carolina, now and in the years to come,” said Amadou Fall, chief operating officer at North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “Cooperatives remain committed to innovation that advances our Brighter Future vision for electricity that is increasingly sustainable, affordable and reliable, and supports our goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”
The battery energy storage system installations will begin in early 2022, with activations anticipated in the summer. Each site will bring temporary construction jobs to the local community and help enhance area resources for future investment.
Electric cooperatives in North Carolina have worked together for years to lead innovative energy strategies, including community solar, microgrids, demand response programs and solar plus storage initiatives.
The substation batteries complement this growing collection of distributed energy resources, which cooperatives are integrating into the grid and deploying at scale. By monitoring and coordinating distributed resources, cooperatives are acting as a ‘distribution operator.’ In this role, cooperatives can manage resources across the state collectively to maximize benefits, including greater visibility across the system, optimized operation for enhanced grid resilience and increased reliability.
“North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives continue to show their leadership and focus on delivering a more intelligent and reliable grid for members across the state,” said FlexGen CEO Kelcy Pegler. “The FlexGen team is thrilled to be delivering our best-in-class technology to provide more resilience and flexibility to our home state grid and consumers.”