Early last week, Texas transmission and distribution company Oncor announced a proposal to install 5,000 megawatts of battery energy storage on the Texas grid. The words “game-changing” get thrown around a lot about energy storage projects—usually prematurely. But in this case I think there are some clear reasons why Oncor’s proposed deal could be a game-changing development for grid battery energy storage:

Oncor’s proposal calls for installing thousands of battery systems ranging from the size of a fridge to a dumpster around the state with a combined power capacity of 5,000 megawatts and a combined energy storage capacity of 15,000 megawatt-hours. These numbers sound big, but what do they mean, really? Let’s put them in context.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Global Energy Storage Database, there are currently approximately 28,500 megawatts of energy storage operating across the entire United States. Of these 28,500 megawatts, the vast majority (26,600 megawatts) is pumped-hydro energy storage. All batteries combined make up just 540 megawatts, so Oncor’s proposal would increase the total U.S. battery energy storage capacity almost ten-fold—all in one state and on one grid.

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