By Jennifer Runyon on Renewable Energy World
Homeowners across the world have been investing in rooftop solar PV for at least two decades, with much of that investment taking place over the past five years. As battery pricing has dropped, many of those same solar enthusiasts have added energy storage to their arrays so they can use more of the solar energy they generate themselves instead of sending their surplus back to the grid.
In recent years, homeowners are obtaining a critical mass of solar. Companies can aggregate those distributed energy resources (DER) and use them to help keep the grid stable during peak demand or to keep customers online during outages.
Sunrun, in partnership with the New England ISO, was one of the first DER aggregators to enter the wholesale market. In 2019 the company bid 20MW of residential solar + storage capacity into the New England ISO forward capacity market. At the time, the Sunrun director of policy and storage market strategy said he thought this announcement was the “tip of the spear” in terms of using DER to provide grid services.
In addition and on October 18, the Texas ERCOT board approved a DER pilot for the Texas market. Furthermore, Amy Heart, VP of Public Policy at Sunrun, is a member of the Public Utility Commission of Texas’ DER Task Force. They also announced the approval of the ERCOT Aggregated Distributed Energy Resources (ADER) Pilot Program on LinkedIn.
“The DER Pilot Program paves the way for Texans with home solar+battery solutions to provide energy to the Texas grid at times when it’s most needed – helping to boost electric reliability and resiliency,” she wrote.