The iconic San Diego Zoo selected EDF Renewables North America to install a new 1 megawatt (MW) / 4 megawatt-hour (MWh) battery at the facility to save money on its electrical bills via the peak shaving functionality of the battery.
The Zoo is looking to leverage the new energy storage installation to eliminate hefty demand charges by absorbing those spikes in usage locally. In addition to peak shaving, the battery will charge up when power is the cheapest, doling it back out again to the Zoo when electricity rates are high.
The battery is coming to the facility with zero money down from the Zoo, thanks to EDF Renewables’ performance-based contract that has the Zoo only paying for the installation if EDF Renewables delivers actual utility bill savings for the Zoo. This puts the entire risk for the installation into the hands of EDF Renewables and allows the Zoo to enter a contract where it can have confidence that it will realize the expected savings.
The Zoo believes the battery will allow it to reduce the cost of operations compared to life before the battery installation. “This is a perfect example of how we are identifying and implementing cost-effective energy and green environmental projects as a part of San Diego Zoo Global’s commitment to sustainability,” Adam Ringler, director of performance improvement at the Zoo said. “In this case, the savings can be invested into enhancing the Zoo experience, and furthering wildlife conservation and education.”
The new storage installation highlights the potential for realizing significant savings by installing energy storage at larger scales as well as the creative financing methods installers are creating to reduce the risk to hosts. In this case, it is no wonder that a Zoo would not want to buy a massive battery as they’re all about the animals.
At the same time, the compelling financial case for installing a battery is too good to pass up, so a partnership that brings in an expert to take care of the management of the battery and the financial risk of managing it over time is a perfect fit.
Andrew Goldstone, director of distributed solutions at EDF Renewables commented, “We are honored to be partnering with such a well-known and respected organization in the San Diego Community. This is a perfect illustration of how we are bringing decades of experience and our financial stability to serve not only utilities and wholesale markets, but also end-users of energy through our Distributed Solutions group.”
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