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CNY home to newest, largest solar energy and storage system


A new kind of clean energy system, and one of the first of its kind, is operating right in central New York.


A non-wires alternative system reduces the need to construct or upgrade wires for energy distribution, making it more cost-effective to run and maintain. The largest of its kind is located at the Pine Grave Solar-Plus-Storage site in Cicero. National Grid partnered with Convergent Energy and Power to construct and operate the energy system that uses solar panels and battery storage. At the site’s ribbon cutting, Frank Genova co-founder of Convergent said this is both a proud and monumental accomplishment for clean energy.


“To our knowledge, it’s the first solar-plus-storage system providing a non-wires alternative in the United States, which is truly a remarkable achievement, and one that we are incredibly proud of,” Geneva said.


Without the new solar storage system, National Grid would have had to build or expand a substation — an expensive process. Rudy Wynter, National Grid New York President said not only does this new kind of system meet customers' needs, it is more cost-effective for them.


“This still meets the need that we have for reliable energy, during those peak times when our customers need it most, but we’re doing it without having to construct some large energy structure to do that,” Wynter said. “Thus making it more inexpensive for customers.”


Wynter said while this technology is still new in terms of energy distribution, more systems like this are likely to pop up across the state. He said it is all a part of turning to clean energy while keeping customer demands filled.


“We’re moving towards cleaner forms of energy, we are looking to make sure networks are more reliable and National Grid is making investments to make sure we are at the forefront of that so our customers get the benefit from that,” Wynter said.


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