Eversource Plans Battery Storage Facility in Provincetown

PROVINCETOWN – A major Eversource battery storage project has been proposed in Provincetown.

The clean energy lithium-ion batteries would be able to provide 10 hours or more of electricity for the communities of Wellfleet, Truro and Provincetown in the event of an outage.

Eversource Director of Clean Energy Development Charlotte Ancel said the batteries would serve around 11,000 customers.

“Like our phone batteries, it charges relatively quickly,” Ancel said.

“It pulls power off the grid and it is able to sit and hold a charge for an extended period of time until when it is needed.”

Eversource customers on the Outer Cape, in the three communities, saw thousands of hours of outages due to intense winter storms last year.

Over the last five years, Ancel said those customers have seen 45,000 outage hours.

“We know we are going to see more and more of [those storms] as climate change continues and intensifies in our region,” Ancel said.

There is one main power line on the Outer Cape along Route 6 which serves all of those customers.

“When there are storms, if any part of it goes out it takes out all of the customers who are downstream – meaning going east from there,” Ancel said.

Another solution discussed would be to build another power line next to the current line, which would provide a backup if one fails.

“That would require us to go through and construct poles and wires through 13 miles of the Cape Cod National Seashore,” Ancel said.

“The environmental impacts to us, as we are also committed to being an environmental steward to the region, didn’t feel acceptable.”

Eversource believes the clean energy battery system is a better alternative and a more cost effective long-term resource.

The battery project, which would be constructed at the Provincetown Transfer Station, will be before town meeting voters Monday.

Eversource is targeting a project completion by the end of 2020.

“We’d like to see it go online as quickly as possible because of the reliability benefits for our customers,” Ancel said.

Ancel said Eversource is hoping to beat its target date and have the battery storage operational sooner.

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