ESA Issues Statement On PEAKER Act, Emphasizes Accelerating Energy Storage Development

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Solar Panel, wind turbines and Li-ion Battery Container With Blue Sky Background. Energy Storage System.

The U.S. Energy Storage Association (ESA) offered the following statement on Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s PEAKER Act of 2021 (S. 1298), which was introduced today with Congresswoman Yvette Clarke.

“We commend Senator Gillibrand and Congresswoman Clarke for introducing the PEAKER Act of 2021 and joining the chorus of legislators focused on accelerating energy storage deployment,” said U.S. Energy Storage Association Interim CEO Jason Burwen. “In addition to a tax credit for storage paired with renewable power generation that substitutes for peaker power plants, the PEAKER Act offers a grant program for emissions-free energy storage located in communities that have historically shouldered greater burdens of pollution from power generation and are on the front lines of adapting to climate change-driven extreme weather. Energy storage facilities will offer added resilience for local electric service and ensure these communities have an economic stake in the transition to clean energy.

“We continue to urge Congress to prioritize the investment tax credit for stand-alone energy storage as part of any tax legislation that seeks to spur clean energy investment and eliminate pollution from our power system. Energy storage is an absolutely critical tool for meeting President Biden’s goal of a carbon-free electric system by 2035, which is expected to require at least 100 GW of new energy storage by 2030. We look forward to working with Congress to pass the storage ITC as a complement to Sen. Gillibrand’s legislation and other efforts to accelerate the clean energy transition.”

During the first quarter of 2021, momentum for the ITC for storage has grown. In March, the president released his American Jobs Plan, which called for the ITC for energy storage. A subsequent report by the Treasury Department also included the ITC for storage, examining its role in increasing reliability of clean energy supply. More than 150 organizations sent a letter to U.S. House and Senate leaders requesting they include bipartisan legislation that would make standalone storage projects eligible for the ITC in the upcoming infrastructure bill. 

Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) and Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) have introduced the bipartisan Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act (S. 627 / H.R. 1684) to remove limits on applying the tax credit to storage technologies only when integrated with ITC-eligible solar projects. This legislation is mirrored in the recently introduced GREEN Act (H.R. 848) and in the Clean Energy for America Act introduced by Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), both of which include making storage technologies eligible for the ITC with an option to elect direct payment of the credit.

As outlined in ESA’s 2030 Vision, at least 100 GW of new energy storage is needed to drive the clean energy transition and transform the electric system to handle 21st century demands. The United States has deployed over 3 GW of battery and other advanced energy storage to date.

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