PG&E to replace Oakland plant with distributed resources


US utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) has won an approval from the California Independent System Operator to replace its Oakland fossil fuel plant with clean energy resources.

PG&E will invest in clean-energy resources including energy storage, energy efficiency and electric-system upgrades, to ensure transmission grid reliability once the Oakland power plant is retired.

Distributed energy resources

The energy provider is set to invite providers of distributed energy resources to submit proposals of innovative solutions which the company can employ.

PG&E expects to add new 20 to 45MW of clean energy resources to its portfolio in Oakland. In addition, the power utility will upgrade existing substations.

The development would mark the first time that local clean-energy resources are proactively deployed as an alternative to fossil-fuel generation for transmission reliability in PG&E’s service area.

Roy Kuga, vice president of Grid Integration and Innovation for PG&E, said: “The Oakland Clean Energy Initiative represents an innovative, tailored portfolio of distributed clean energy resources combined with traditional transmission substation upgrades that meet the local reliability needs in this area of Oakland, enabling the retirement of the aging, jet fuel-powered plant.”

PG&E has used the Oakland power plant to meet peak demand for the past 20 years. The plant is owned by Dynegy.

PG&E will file proposals with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to recover costs set to be used in deploying energy storage systems and with the California Public Utilities Commission for costs of other distributed energy resources by the end of 2018.