Pacific Gas and Electric (PCG) Building Wind Energy Storage Plant

According to, Pacific Gas and Electric just announced that it will be building a 300-megawatt facility to store wind energy generated during times of low demand, to be released when demand is up.The facility will consist of an underground storage area. Compressed air will be injected into the storage facility and released to produce electricity as needed.

The plant is expected to cost $356 million. Is it a good investment? Some wind industry analysts say no. For example, in the article referenced above, Michael Goggin, manager of transmission policy for the American Wind Association, stated that he thought it would be better to build transmission lines instead:

“I would say that in the near term, that would have more of an effect across the country than a compressed air energy storage” project.”

PG & E disagrees, as they don’t believe that we can upgrade our energy transmission capabilities fast enough to put excess wind energy to use.

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