ETB Ask an Expert: Kelly Speakes-Backman from the Energy Storage Association on Federal Energy Storage Policy Issues including FERC 841, FERC 2222, and ITC
by Adam Gerza on Sep 23, 2020
Our latest “ETB Ask an Expert” guest is Kelly Speakes-Backman, the CEO of the Energy Storage Association (ESA), the national trade association for energy storage issues in the US. ESA is the leading national voice that advocates and advances the energy storage industry, working to accelerate the widespread use of competitive and reliable energy storage systems in North America. In our interview, Kelly talks about ESA’s work at the federal, state, and RTO level of opening new markets and removing barriers to achieve a more resilient, efficient, sustainable, and affordable electricity grid – as is uniquely enabled by energy storage.
In our interview with Kelly, she talks about her diverse work experience in the energy industry over the last 20+ years. She got her start as an HVAC design engineer, worked in the private sector at several well-known companies including Wartsila, United Technologies, and was one of the first 50 employees at SunEdison. More recently Kelly was a Commissioner at the Maryland Public Service Commission, before becoming CEO at ESA.
Our conversation with Kelly focused on a few key federal energy storage policy topics, including FERC Order 1841, which directs grid operators across the country to open their markets to energy storage, connected at the distribution grid or behind customers meters. We also discuss FERC Order 2222, which was just approved last week, which enables distributed energy resource (DER) aggregations to compete on a level playing field in energy, capacity, and ancillary services markets run by regional grid operators. We discuss the possible timing and politics of getting standalone energy storage (ITC) investment tax credit legislation passed. Lastly, we discuss ESA’s recently announced 100 GW’s by 2030 vision and the policies that will be required to make that a reality.
Jump ahead to this part of the conversation:
0:32 Kelly’s background and work experience
3:00 FERC Order 841
6:40 FERC Order 2222
12:27 Energy Storage ITC (Investment Tax Credit) legislation
15:02 The different types of work ESA does
19:38 ESA’s 100 x 30 vision (100 GW’s of storage by 2030)