By Amanda Durish Cook
After two meetings, MISO’s newly created Energy Storage Task Force has established its charter but not yet developed a plan of action for next year.
While the group spent much of its Nov. 28 meeting finalizing language for its mission statement, it also agreed to schedule an additional conference call in late December to create a 2018 work plan covering storage discussion topics.
During the meeting, stakeholders settled on a sparsely worded charter that stipulates the task force will “engage subject matter experts in the identification of potential issues or topics that are unique to integration of energy storage or challenge the ability to realize benefits of energy storage.”
The group will also “identify and track issues specific to energy storage that are within the purview of MISO in any of its administrative or functional roles.”
The final version of the mission statement implicitly respects state jurisdiction over storage assets, stakeholders said.
Task force Chair John Fernandes said stakeholders and states were understandably wary of turning over storage assets to MISO’s control. “The 800-pound gorilla in the room is state jurisdiction. There is concern from the states that they don’t want to turn over a piece of hardware, an asset over to MISO,” he said.
Indianapolis Power and Light’s Lin Franks noted that New York has mechanisms in place that allow storage assets to be subject to both state control and ISO regulation, enabling them to participate in wholesale and retail markets “almost simultaneously.”
The charter will now head to the Steering Committee for approval at its Jan. 24 meeting.
A Question of Priorities
Task force leaders have asked stakeholders to help determine the group’s key priorities before the December call. The group expects to also submit an issue prioritization to the Steering Committee, which assigns specific issues to other committees.
Task force members said the group could track storage issues in MISO committees to ensure they are being addressed in order of priority. Some stakeholders cautioned the group that it shouldn’t tread on the Steering Committee’s assignment authority.
Fernandes said the task force will next month take up general education on energy storage issues, identifying what MISO market rules already accommodate storage and reviewing FERC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on storage participation in wholesale markets.
Some stakeholders asked the task force to be mindful of the need to act quickly on storage issues.
“MISO has already indicated that it’s going to model storage in transmission planning. At what point in the calendar is MISO going to start modeling these things?” asked Customized Energy Solutions’ David Sapper. “It seems like the sooner the better.”
In written comments to MISO, DTE Energy asked the task force to make storage modeling in MISO planning its top priority.
The Energy Storage Association asked the task force to avoid “unnecessary administrative burden” and assign issues as quickly as possible, suggesting that the most urgent issue is the development of resource adequacy rules and capacity accreditation for storage resources.
Indianapolis Power and Light suggested that stakeholders this month already begin focusing the discussion on storage participation in the interconnection process and energy and ancillary services markets, and send any readied issues to the Steering Committee. Entergy, however, asked for the first storage issue referrals by the end of the first quarter of 2018.
IPL also asked that MISO create a Gantt chart — a bar chart that illustrates project tasks and their start and end dates — to track storage discussions in the RTO’s different stakeholder committees.
State of MISO Storage
MISO currently has one 1-MW battery that offers regulating reserves under a Stored Energy Resource designation, a market definition for short-term storage that was developed in 2008. However, an additional 50 MW of storage went through the interconnection queue in recent years, 20 MW of which is already in service, while the remaining 30 MW is expected to go live by the end of 2019, according to MISO spokesperson Mark Adrian Brown. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that even more “distribution-connected energy storage is active or under construction in the MISO footprint,” he said.
The RTO currently has 150 MW of storage in its interconnection queue.
MISO said that while its current rules do not expressly limit storage participation in regulating service, they do not “explicitly define a storage resource or product or fully clarify rules for how storage would integrate under other resource types.” The RTO envisions creating a second type of Stored Energy Resource designation that would allow storage to be eligible to offer energy, capacity, up and down ramping, spinning reserve, supplemental reserve or regulating reserve “to the extent a particular storage resource is technically capable of providing any or all of these products.”