National Grid and REV Renewables end plan to build battery storage facility in town of Long Lake
By Chloe Bennett
Plans for a battery energy storage facility in Raquette Lake have been scrapped, according to a representative of National Grid. The move came after public pushback against the project about environmental concerns and safety fears.
“Following extensive community engagement, the companies agreed that there were challenges in the planned location for the battery energy storage system,” Jared Paventi, communications manager for National Grid, said.
The project, meant to address outages in the area, would have installed 12 tractor-sized trailers on Antlers Road in the hamlet. The estimated cost of the project would be around $50 million.
Paventi said the developers believe the projects are safe and critical to a future of renewable energy, which is reflected in initial findings from an inter-agency report on several New York facilities released in December.
“It’s a critical piece of our clean energy future in New York,” he said. “It just doesn’t work in this case.”
In August 2023, the town of Long Lake voted to place a moratorium on processing permits for battery storage facilities after community members protested the project. The pause was set to expire a year later.
William Acker, director of the New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium, also noted the facilities’ role in the local and global energy transition.
“Although the developer of the proposed Raquette Lake battery project has opted not to move forward with the project, energy storage remains a vital clean energy technology for ensuring grid reliability and resilience, especially in remote locations such as the Adirondacks,” he said in an email.
Melissa Wilde, who owns property on Raquette Lake, said she was relieved that the microgrid planning ceased.
“Good public policy is needed now more than ever as we fight climate change,” she said in an email. “The state of New York and the Adirondack Park Agency should recognize the need for community engagement and better siting criteria for energy projects; criteria that recognize the park’s unique environmental, social and economic characteristics and the advantages and challenges those create.”
No set plans to address the outages in the area have been made, though National Grid plans to construct a new substation to improve reliability, Paventi said. That work is set to start in warmer weather.
National Grid is holding off on starting new renewable energy projects until after the final inter-agency report is released, he said.
“Based on the draft report, I can say that we had a lot of things that exceeded the standards of the draft report,” Paventi said. “But I think that in terms of where we’re going to proceed with future projects, we are going to wait until we have the final report so that way we can ensure we are completely compliant with everything that the workgroup has brought forth.”
When asked if a renewable energy project was on the table to address outages around Raquette Lake, Paventi said none were planned.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.