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SaskPower opens first battery energy storage facility outside Regina


SaskPower has opened its first battery energy storage facility on the outskirts of Reinga. It will serve as a back-up for when solar panels and wind turbines aren’t producing electricity.

The facility is the size of a football field. It will store 20 megawatts of battery power, enough to meet the needs of 20,000 homes for one hour.

“Reducing emissions from power generation is a key pillar of our government’s climate change strategy and SaskPower is making extraordinary progress,” Minister of SaskPower Dustin Duncan said.

The batteries will serve as a backup to SaskPower’s renewable energy sources. The facility will be an additional energy source when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun isn’t shining.

“So they’re used very strategically but they’re necessary to ensure you’re balancing kind of the intermittency of wind and solar in our system,” Rupen Pandyka, SaskPower’s president said.

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The $34 million SaskPower facility has the storage equivalent of 5.7 million AA batteries. These are much larger and housed in a dozen sea can sized containers.

“Battery energy storage systems are used throughout North America,” Pandya said. “Alberta, Ontario already have significant battery energy storage systems in place. You know this will be a feature of all power systems globally in the future. No question.”

The battery system will back up only a small percentage of SaskPower’s total wind and solar energy supply, and for only for an hour. More battery facilities are planned but SaskPower’s main focus remains on nuclear to supply the majority of non fossil fuel generated electricity in the future. Top Stories

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