To Battery or NOT to Battery? - Peak Power

To Battery or NOT to Battery?

To Battery or NOT to Battery?

As I do on most mornings, I check the weather forecast in southern California and around the state. I’m sure there are many other solar system owners like me who are curious to know if they will be generating power during the day in question. In addition to that perspective, I started to reflect on how drastically different the overall precipitation, specifically the snowpack, was this year compared to last. With reservoirs not filling up like expected, hydro power generation will be increasingly lower than last summer when strong run off was prominent.

I’m sure you’re starting to notice a trend with Peak Power Solutions; we take the normal things of the world we encounter daily and use that as both an analogy and literally to paint a clear picture of the energy landscape in our state. I hope to dispel some of the mystery and give you sound data to consider. As the we’ve seen the utility rate structures undergo transformation more rapidly than movie stars identity, one can only expect that energy storage (in the form of batteries) is the next contributor to the overall paradigm.

So, what does hydro-generation have anything to do with any of this? It demonstrates the inherent volatility of the power generation portfolio of our state. Low water levels equals low power generation from this often low-cost source. This presents another key driver for Peak Power Solutions; volatility associated with energy commodities alone provides a robust case to pursue greater certainty with a solar system of your own.

I wanted to take a moment to jump back and zero in on the reservoir, as it acts similarly to how a battery energy storage unit would be to a solar system. The big difference with this stored energy source is the length by which it can be stored, in addition to other extenuating factors as to when and why water is released. When the utilities need to supply load at various times of the year, it benefits them to have an array of generation resources in their portfolio that utilize varying forms of energy to produce electricity. With that recipe comes cost, which ultimately comes back to you and me paying for a resource we barely use.

Our Peak Power Solutions representatives are receiving a lot of inquiries on the subject as to when to apply an energy storage solution into their overall home energy system. It is first critical to understand that a battery storage system acts less as a backup and more of a load shifting mechanism. A Peak Power Solutions battery storage system would be designed to be drawn upon when utility energy rates are high, weather conditions are uncertain, and/or your solar power generation is not drawing as much energy.

As noted earlier, the rate structures have mutated on multiple occasions over the last few decades in part to both increased power generation costs and the inception of more behind-the-meter energy options for customers. As referenced earlier, low snowpack will result in lower hydro-generation and ultimately increase natural-gas fired generation. Paired with the CPUC restrictions placed on Aliso Canyon natural gas underground storage, reduced accessibility and higher transport cost to get natural gas to California can be expected. As you’re quickly seeing, a battery storage system starts making better sense when you weigh out the full energy scene across the state.

With exponential change upon the energy industry as a whole, contacting your Peak Power Solutions representative couldn’t be any more timely. Let them partner with you in the assessment process, and help you devise your personal plan for energy liberation.

Give us a call today and let’s work together!


By |2018-03-06T18:21:43+00:00March 1st, 2018|California Solar|0 Comments

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About the Author:

Peak Power Solutions founder and CEO. Matt has over 25 years of experience in electrical contracting and solar.

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