In February, Strategen Consulting prepared an analysis of the costs of battery storage for the [new gas plant] site, and found that while batteries would likely represent higher capital costs, that the estimated lifetime levelized cost of electricity from a battery system was much lower than those of the gas peaker plants that Entergy is planning.
The analysis also notes that batteries can additionally provide grid services that a gas plant cannot. This includes stabilizing frequency on the grid during natural disasters which take other power plants offline, which Strategen notes was demonstrated by battery systems in the Dominican Republic during Hurricane Irma.
Strategen’s recommendation was clear: given other viable options, an all-source solicitation could provide a better, cheaper alternative:
Given the advancements in the state of battery storage leading up to and since ENO’s application, it appears warranted to revisit the viability of this option in lieu of the proposed alternative. The Council should require Entergy to conduct an all-source RFP solicitation that clearly defines system needs and would be open to a variety of resources including (but not limited to), energy storage, solar + storage, and demand response. This would allow for broad market participation to determine the most cost-effective mix of resources able to fulfill Entergy’s peak capacity and reliability needs.