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New York to invest $40M in solar-backed storage to meet 2025 goal

New York is investing $40 million in solar-backed storage projects in an effort to accelerate reaching its energy storage target of 1,500 MW by 2025.

At the annual conference of the Alliance for Clean Energy-New York in Albany on Oct. 10, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the funding, which seeks to further his Clean Energy Standard plan to procure 50% of statewide electricity needs from renewable energy sources by 2030.

To help jump-start the energy storage efforts, New York state's NY-Sun program will make $40 million available in early November for the development of at least 50 MW of solar-plus-storage projects and the lowering of deployment barriers associated with customer acquisition, siting and interconnection. Those funds will be the first storage incentive funds made available since the June release of New York's final Energy Storage Roadmap, which could lead to a more ambitious target of between 2,800 MW and 3,600 MW of storage by 2030.

"Solar-plus-storage helps reduce consumer energy bills and improves the value of renewable energy to the grid," said the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, or NYSERDA, in a press release. Pairing solar and storage systems can deliver lower consumer costs by taking advantage of expiring federal tax credits, combining the permitting and interconnection processes, and utilizing less space by co-locating them on the same sites, according to NYSERDA, which is the state vehicle for spurring renewable and energy efficiency developments.

"By offering a new incentive for solar-plus-storage projects for the commercial and industrial sectors, including so-called community solar gardens, the storage component will ensure that renewable energy is shifted to times of highest customer usage, such as afternoon hours on summer days," said NYSERDA.