California: Sweden’s Eolus launches third US battery storage project for 2024 COD


Swedish wind power pioneer Eolus has made a final investment decision (FID) on a battery storage project in California, its third in the US, with a targeted commercial operation in 2024.

The company announced that construction on the Pome battery energy storage system (BESS), in San Diego, will start in the third quarter of this year for commercial operation in Q4 2024.

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The Pome BESS is a 100MW/400MWh project which has been under development since 2019. The BESS supply deal has been secured with an unnamed provider, and a ten-year tolling agreement has also been signed with an unknown buyer.

It is Eolus’ third BESS project in the US, after projects in Arizona and California which it has since sold ownership of but continues to develop under development services agreements (DSA).

In January last year, it sold the 120MW Cald project in Los Angeles to Aypa Power and then in October sold the 500MW PV, 250MW BESS Centennial Flats project in Arizona to an unnamed ‘large publicly traded global private equity investment firm’. Cald is expected to come online in 2024 while Centennial Flats, which it acquired at an early-stage back in 2018, is scheduled for 2026.

Centennial Flats has also progressed recently, last week obtaining site control and signing a grid connection agreement. The milestone means that Eolus has now been paid 40% of the total project acquisition consideration by the buyer of US$104-190 million.

Though Eolus didn’t reveal Pome’s offtaker, four-hour BESS projects in California generally supply energy to the state’s large investor-owned utilities PG&E, SDG&E and SCE, through long-term agreements under grid operator CAISO’s Resource Adequacy framework.

However, smaller, locally-focused community choice aggregators (CCAs) are also active, particularly in securing offtake from longer duration projects.

“There is a strong demand for energy storage in California to support the energy system and we are excited to realize this project. We see great interest for investing in renewable energy and energy storage”, says Hans-Christian Schulze, Country Manager of Eolus North America.

“Eolus has been active in the US since 2015 and we have a strong project pipeline, where the US projects make up one-quarter of Eolus’s total project portfolio. After the Inflation Reduction Act being signed the US market is really booming.”, added Per Witalisson, CEO of Eolus.

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