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Energy Department Releases Strategic Plan for Energy Storage Safety

December 23, 2014 - 10:16am


I am pleased to announce that we have just released the Energy Storage Safety Strategic Plan, a roadmap for grid energy storage safety that addresses the range of grid-scale, utility, community, and residential energy storage technologies being deployed across the Nation. With electrical energy storage becoming increasingly widespread, more technologies with the ability to improve the efficiency and reliability of the electric grid are being introduced into the marketplace. Recognizing the importance of addressing safety, OE worked with industry and other stakeholders to develop a Plan that highlights safety validation techniques, incident preparedness, safety codes, standards, and regulations. The Plan also makes recommendations for near- and long-term actions. Stakeholders involved in this effort included energy storage manufacturers, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, utility representatives, the Electric Power Research Institute, firefighters, the National Fire Protection Agency, the insurance industry, building inspectors, and Japan’s National Institute of Technology and Evaluation.

Safety is a multi-faceted issue. Earlier this year, we issued two reports that complement this Plan. The Overview of Development and Deployment of Codes, Standards and Regulations Affecting Energy Storage System Safety in the United States explains the development and deployment of codes, standards, and regulations. A companion document, Inventory of Safety-related Codes and Standards for Energy Storage Systems, provides a compendium of codes, standards and regulations currently as well as numerous case studies. Together, these documents treat various aspects of energy storage safety in a comprehensive, systematic way. 

This Strategic Plan and related reports are part of OE’s extensive program on grid scale energy storage technology advancement which is designed to develop and demonstrate new and advanced energy storage technologies that will enable the stability, resiliency, and surety of the future electric grid. R&D activities focus on lowering cost while improving value, and increasing the performance, safety, and reliability of stationary energy storage technologies for utility-scale applications. Additionally, OE’s Energy Storage program develops and demonstrates energy storage technologies, devices, and systems that can reduce power disturbances, improve system flexibility to better incorporate variable and intermittent renewable resources, reduce peak demand, and provide resiliency for the grid. 

As we continue modernizing the grid, much work remains to be done. For energy storage to reach full acceptance, a number of things must occur, including proven technical feasibility of the technologies, competitive costs, and a regulatory framework that addresses energy storage.

To learn more about OE’s Energy Storage program, please visit the Energy Storage section of the OE website.