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US BATTERY STORAGE: Capacity tops 12.5 GW in Q2; 3.5 GW planned in Q3


Total US capacity climbs 61% year on year in Q2

CAISO accounts for nearly 50% of total

  • Author
  • Kassia Micek    Justine Coyne
  • Editor
  • Rocco Canonica
  • Commodity
  • Electric Power Energy Transition Metals

Total US battery storage capacity soared 61% year on year to 12.689 GW by the end of the second quarter, but only about half of the expected facilities actually came online, as Q3 is expected to see roughly 3.5 GW added.

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There was 1.931 GW of capacity added during Q2, an increase of 18% from Q1, according to an S&P Global Commodity Insights compilation of various government filings. The data includes facilities that either began commercial operation or were synchronized to the grid.

The California Independent System Operator leads the nation in battery storage capacity at 6.314 GW, or 47.8% of total US capacity, according to the data.

Prices for lithium, a key metal used in battery components, have remained below the record highs reached in 2022. After seeing an uptick in June, prices for both lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide have cooled off throughout July and August.

Platts, part of S&P Global Commodity Insights, assessed seaborne lithium prices on a CIF North Asia basis Aug. 23 at $31,000/mt for carbonate and $31,500/mt for hydroxide. Lithium carbonate and hydroxide prices were down 59% and 61%, respectively, since the start of 2023.

Q2 additions

After a muted Q1, CAISO added the most capacity in Q2 with 1.123 GW, or 58% of total US additions, followed by the Western Electricity Coordinating Council with 709 MW added, or 36.7% of total US installations. After having the most additions in Q1, ERCOT added no capacity in Q2, according to the data.

The largest projects completed in Q2 were all located in the West:

Moss Landing Energy Storage 3 is now the second largest battery storage facility in operation across the US. The largest is Florida Power and Light's 409-MW Manatee Energy Storage Center, which started operations in Q4 2021.

NextEra Energy Resources continues to have the largest operating battery storage capacity in the US with 1.834 GW, according to the data. With the largest facility installed in Q2, Vistra Energy jumped into the second spot with 1.023 GW capacity, which bumped Axium Infrastructure to third with 733 MW, unchanged. Rounding out the top five companies by capacity are Terra-Gen Power with 661 MW and LS Power Development Affiliates with 615 MW.

In comparison, the American Clean Power Association's Q1 report showed battery storage additions totaled 1.51 GW/5.098 GWh in Q2 between 31 projects, a jump of 32% from how much was added in Q2 2022.

Q3 expectations

If all 3.555 GW of proposed Q3 additions are completed and connected to the grid, it would bring the US total to nearly 16.2 GW, according to the data compiled.

In Q3, additions are once again expected to be focused on the West. Developers in CAISO are expected to add over 2 GW, or 59.3% of all US planned additions, while WECC is projected to add 843 MW, or 3,824.2%. ERCOT is proposed to be third in line with nearly 400 MW added, or 11.4% of Q2 additions.

The top five largest projects proposed to be completed in Q3 are located in the West:

  • NextEra Energy Resources' 325-MW Desert Peak Energy Storage in California
  • NextEra Energy Resources' 260-MW Sonoran Solar Energy in Arizona
  • CIM Group's 225-MW Westlands Solar Blue in California
  • Southern California Edison's 200-MW SCE Cathode Hinson BESS in California
  • Terra-Gen Power's 169-MW Sanborn BESS 3 in California

Sonoran Solar Energy was previously expected to be the largest project added in Q1 and was delayed to Q2, but has now been pushed back to Q3.

Besides the combined 2.069 GW planned in CAISO, WECC and ERCOT, there are 113 MW slated for the New York ISO, 34 MW planned for the PJM Interconnections, 20 MW expected in Southeast states and 10 MW proposed in ISO new England.

Looking further out, WECC is projected to have 9.2 GW of battery storage by the end of 2023 and 13.6 GW by the end of 2024, according to data from S&P Global Commodity Insights. ERCOT follows with an expected 3.288 GW by the end of this year and then a jump to 10.697 GW the following year.

The next regions projected to break 1 GW of battery storage capacity are the NYISO with 1.324 GW by the end of 2024 and the PJM Interconnection with 1.024 GW by the end of 2024, according to data from S&P Global Commodity Insights. In 2026, ISO New England, Midcontinent ISO and the Southeast are forecast to reach 1 GW of capacity, while the Southwest Power Pool is not expected to reach that level until 2027.