SaskPower announced its first ever utility-scale battery energy storage system (BESS) is now online, providing added flexibility to the provincial grid and supporting the company’s net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions efforts.

The BESS, located at SaskPower’s Fleet Street substation in Regina, has capacity to provide 20 megawatts (MW) of power to the grid – the equivalent of enough to power up to 20,000 homes for one hour. The project was funded in part by the Government of Canada.

“The Battery Energy Storage System will improve the management of renewable energy in Saskatchewan by balancing the power system during peak demand periods,” said Dan Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, PrairiesCan and CanNor. “With the new system, Saskatchewanians will now have access to more reliable energy while polluting less.”

“The addition of battery storage will enable SaskPower to better respond to the fluctuating demands of our electrical grid,” said Dustin Duncan, Minister Responsible for SaskPower. “By storing surplus renewable energy until it’s needed, this facility will help SaskPower reduce carbon emissions while keeping power rates as low as possible.”

“We are pleased to add battery storage as another tool to help us provide sustainable, reliable power to our customers,” said Rupen Pandya, SaskPower President and CEO. “The experience we gain from operating our first BESS will help us determine the potential for more battery energy storage in the future.”

SaskPower’s BESS, located at the Fleet Street substation in Regina, has capacity to provide 20 megawatts (MW) of power to the grid. (SaskPower)

Battery storage has more flexibility and can respond quicker to short-term power fluctuations than some of the conventional generating units that are currently on the grid. The BESS will help SaskPower balance the power system when demand spikes for short periods of time. Battery storage can also support the further deployment of intermittent generation options such as wind and solar.

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Construction of the Regina BESS started in fall 2022, with the Canadian company On Power providing the system and its equipment, and SaskPower’s contractors completing installation on-site.

Featured image: Dustin Duncan, Minister Responsible for SaskPower (left) and Rupen Pandya, SaskPower president and CEO. (SaskPower)

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