• Stem one of 10 winners in Con Edison demand-response auction
  • Demand-response to help Con Edison defer substation investment

Stem Inc., a California-based provider of energy-storage systems, is among 10 winners of Consolidated Edison Inc.’s maiden auction for demand-response services, a sign of growing utility demand for battery technology.

The storage company plans to install battery systems with as much as 857 kilowatts of capacity in New York City by 2018. Con Edison expects Stem and the other providers to help reduce power usage on the grid by as much as 22 megawatts during peak periods, the New York-based utility said in an e-mailed statement Friday.

Stem installs and manages storage systems, typically at commercial sites. When energy demand is high, the users start drawing power from its batteries instead of the local grid, freeing up capacity for other utility customers. The company won a contract in 2014 to provide 85 megawatts of capacity in Los Angeles for Edison International’s Southern California Edison.

“We’re going to use our existing model -- battery storage plus software controls and the aggregation of the fleet to deliver capacity to Con Ed,” said Karen Butterfield, Millbrae, California-based Stem’s chief commercial officer, said in an interview Friday. “We don’t have customers contracted, but we have customers lined up.” The company currently operates 74 megawatt-hours of storage systems.

Deferred Investment

Con Edison said the demand response program will let it defer spending $1.2 billion on a new substation.

Other winners of Con Edison’s auction included EnerNOC Inc., Innoventive Power LLC, Direct Energy Inc., Power Efficiency Corp., Demand Energy Networks Inc., Energy Spectrum and Tarsier Ltd., a utility spokesman said.

Con Edison agreed to pay prices ranging from $215 to $988, per kilowatt per year, for the demand-response services, according to the statement.

“Our neighborhood program is all about finding new strategies and technologies to help our customers manage their energy usage and still have the reliable power they need,” Greg Elcock, who manages the program for Con Edison, said in the statement. Applicable technologies include energy efficiency and solar power.

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