A California law that requires utilities to get 33 percent of their electricity from renewable sources like solar and wind is widely credited with accelerating the state’s cleantech economy. Now state regulators are poised to compel utilities to invest in “energy storage,” which could jump-start technology long considered the holy grail of the electricity industry.
The proposed energy storage decision was written by PUC Commissioner Carla Peterman, who was appointed to the agency by Gov. Jerry Brown in late 2012. She notes that storage devices are commonplace: Think about the batteries in consumer electronics, or Tupperware, or the fat cells in our own bodies. But the ability to store electricity on a large scale to save it for when it is most needed has been elusive.
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