San Diego, Calif. (Oct 12, 2020) – Long-duration, non-lithium ion energy storage is the final key to unlocking renewables and permanently evading the blackouts and brownouts that California is currently facing due to fires, a changing energy mix and climate change. Without storage, 100% renewables penetration is not possible. To address this, the California Energy Commission (CEC) wisely foresaw the challenge and awarded a number of grants earlier this year to lead in solving these problems.
Indian Energy LLC (Indian Energy), a 100% Native American-owned utility-scale and microgrid development and systems integration firm, was awarded $1.2 million by the CEC to demonstrate a non-lithium ion, long-duration energy storage solution.
The grant was the result of CEC Solicitation GFO-19-306, “Demonstrating Long-Duration and Title 24-Compatible Energy Storage Technologies.” The purpose of this solicitation was to fund technology demonstration and the deployment of research projects that support the State of California’s “Development of Customer’s Business Proposition to Accelerate Integrated Distributed Storage Market.” The energy storage goals are aimed to rapidly advance the deployment of state-of-the-art and 100% renewable microgrids in California. These projects involve both the installation and operation of pre-and post commercial energy storage technologies. These applications have been a pressing need across the region and the State of California, as a whole.
Utilizing the grant funds; Indian Energy, along with strategic partners Webcor and KE Storage Corporation (KESC), will develop an energy storage Integration and Certification Unit (VICU), located on the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay lands. The VICU will demonstrate the long duration energy storage capabilities of (KESC) NextGenTM flywheel technology. The project will also incorporate 150kW of Solar PV and provide grid support and resiliency to the Tribe’s Emergency Medical Services facility.
This project has a broad base of support from both government and industry leadership.
“We are excited to partner with Indian Energy on the VICU demonstration project. While showing the environmentally sound merits of non-lithium based energy storage, this project will also provide resiliency to a key medical facility on our lands. This project will lay the foundation for a true energy sovereign solution for our tribal members and businesses,” said John Christman, Chairman of the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians.
“The insight of the CEC to accelerate energy storage is visionary and Indian Country is honored to play a critical role in demonstrating the value of long-duration, utility-scale energy storage. Due to the State’s current firestorms, historical record-breaking heat and the incredible stress being put upon the State’s local and regional grids, this need for energy storage has proven to be most opportune. This timely effort and vision could not be more prevelant as seen by the regional outages and ever-increasing rolling brown outs.” Said Allen G. Cadreau, CEO of Indian Energy.
Indian Energy also recently executed a construction management contract with Webcor to assist the Company with this and other projects the Company has been awarded.
“We are excited about this progress within the energy storage and microgrid space and are standing beside Indian Energy, ready to assist them, and The Viejas People, realize their energy goals,” said Mike Firenze, Director of Federal Programs at Webcor. “Webcor has long been recognized for our team’s unparalleled work in advancing the practices of sustainability in construction, and as such makes us uniquely prepared to aid in combating the current plight facing California and these initial, crucial steps in renewable energy represent our progress to date in a big way.”
About Indian Energy LLC
Indian Energy, LLC is a privately held microgrid developer and systems integrator, specializing in developing large-scale advanced energy resiliency solutions for the Department of Defense, Community Choice Aggregators and Tribal Utility Authority’s. The Company was founded in 2009 and is certified as a Small Business Enterprise and a Minority-owned Business Enterprise. Indian Energy is 100% Native American Indian owned and operated, with domestic offices in Anaheim Hills and San Diego, California, and internationally in Baja Norte California, Mexico. The Company has 4GW of Solar PV and Wind, and 6GWh of energy storage under development.
Webcor is a premier provider of commercial construction services, known for its innovative and efficient approach, wide range of experience, cost effective design-build methodology, skill in concrete construction and expertise in building landmark projects. Webcor’s mission is to safely build structures of superior quality with integrity, continuously improve its processes by employing the best talent in the industry, and add social and economic value to its communities. Founded in 1971 and repeatedly honored as one of the Greenest Builders in California, Healthiest Employers, Top Corporate Philanthropists, Best Places to Work and Largest California Construction Firms, Webcor has offices throughout the state in San Francisco, Alameda, San Jose, Los Angeles and San Diego.
About KE Storage Corporation
KESC is a privately held manufacturer of energy storage devices, specializing in developing large-scale advanced energy resiliency solutions for the Department of Defense, Community Choice Aggregators and Tribal Utility Authorities. The Company was founded in 2017 and is located in the San Francisco Bay Area.
About the California Energy Commission
The California Energy Commission is leading the state to a 100 percent clean energy future. It has seven core responsibilities: developing renewable energy, transforming transportation, increasing energy efficiency, investing in energy innovation, advancing state energy policy, certifying thermal power plants, and preparing for energy emergencies.