PROJECT PROFILE

The proposed Big Chino Valley Pumped Storage Project will use energy storage technology to anchor new electricity transmission infrastructure as an all-encompassing, integrated energy solution to the region’s growing energy needs.

The Challenge: Southwest states are moving to adopt large-scale solar and wind energy to supplement other forms of energy generation to meet ambitious energy goals. This changing generation mix is creating concerns over future energy supply and grid reliability in a region already experiencing rapid population growth, increasing energy demands and constrained interstate transmission lines. A modern power grid is needed to support this evolving and uncertain energy future – a grid flexible enough to accommodate diverse generation resources, changing market demands and ever-evolving technology inputs

Our Solution: Significant investment in a large-scale pumped storage facility in northern Arizona, with robust transmission grid interconnections serving Arizona, Nevada and Southern California. Acting like a large electric battery, pumped storage of energy provides three distinct advantages: addresses bulk storage of excess renewable energy, offers reliability support to the electrical grid, and redeploys excess renewable energy when and where it’s needed.

Environmental Stewardship: We recognize the significance of water resources in the Southwest and believe that when approached in a responsible way, using water to store energy and generate electricity will work to this region’s advantage. We are working collaboratively to apply ongoing research, conduct studies and prepare environmental analyses – all with the goal of maintaining long-term stewardship of the water and land resources. Moreover, the pumped storage facility will employ a closed-loop design, which means the project will be isolated from naturally flowing waterways. 

Location: This pumped storage and electric transmission project is proposed for Arizona’s Yavapai, Coconino and Mohave counties, centered about five miles southeast of Seligman, Arizona. This area of the state has suitable topography, available grid connections, and provides close proximity to grid market hubs.

Established Technology

This facility will pump water from a lower reservoir to an upper reservoir during periods of high renewable generation and/or low electrical demand and store it as potential energy, like a large electric battery. The facility can return the stored energy to the grid on demand by flowing water by gravity through a generation turbine back to the lower reservoir. Transmission lines carry the energy to where it’s needed – presenting an integrated generation and transmission solution for the region.


  • Project Overview
    • 2,000 MW closed loop pumped storage hydro (PSH) facility with two water reservoirs (296 acres)
    • Three potential transmission interconnections:
      • - 500 kV tie at Peacock Substation (WAPA)
      • - 500 kV tie into Moenkopi-Eldorado Substation (APS/SCE)
      • - 500 kV tie into Yavapai Substation (APS)
    • Would convert approximately 650 acres currently used for grazing
    • Projected commercial online date of 2025-2028

  • Project Capabilities and Benefits
    • Increases reliability of the electrical grid and regional generation
    • Closed-loop design limits water consumption for initial and ongoing water usage
    • Reduces transmission congestion
    • Fast ramping capabilities and reduced over-generation risk
    • Frequency regulation and improved voltage stability
    • Firming of renewable resources
    • Reduced resource cycling and renewable curtailment
    • Resolves largest WECC contingency in creating a diverse outlet for Eldorado-Moenkopi transmission line in CAISO
    • Presents a near 1-to-1 replacement of any temporary loss of energy capacity from Palo Verde Nuclear Station near Phoenix when partnered with a similar amount of solar energy (e.g. unit trip)
    • Ancillary support for the operational characteristics of the Southwest transmission grid as the region responds to the increased penetration of renewable resources
    • An Arizona State University study estimates the project will generate an additional $5.1 billion to statewide GDP, and 45,871 additional job years of employment over a 25-year period.

Community Engagement: ITC is committed to transparency and engagement with stakeholders throughout this process to assess project viability, establish ourselves as a valued neighbor, address our environmental approach and ensure project benefits are realized throughout the region.

PROJECT STATUS

  • Posted Jun 29, 2018
    On June 27, 2018, ITC Holdings Corp., hosted a joint stakeholder meeting in Prescott, Arizona. 

    View the presentation
  • Posted May 23, 2018
    On May 22, 2018, FERC Approved Big Chino Valley Pumped Storage LLC’s Request to Use Traditional License Process and Issued a Public Notice.
  • Posted Mar 30, 2018

    On March 30, 2018, Big Chino Valley Pumped Storage LLC submitted an Errata to its filing of a Notification of Intent (NOI) and Pre-Application Document (PAD) with FERC.

  • Posted Mar 30, 2018

    On March 30, 2018, Big Chino Valley Pumped Storage LLC submitted its Notification of Intent (NOI) and Pre-Application Document (PAD) to FERC.

  • Posted Mar 30, 2018
    On March 30, 2018, ITC Holdings Corp. issued a public notice regarding filing a Notification of Intent (NOI) and Pre-Application Document (PAD) FERC.
  • Posted Jan 23, 2018
    On January 23, 2018, Big Chino Valley Pumped Storage LLC submitted its Initial Information Package to FERC.
  • Posted Dec 28, 2017
    On December 28, 2017, the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued the preliminary permit for Big Chino Valley.
  • Posted Oct 13, 2017
    On October 13, 2017, the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission gave notice the preliminary permit application was accepted.
  • Posted Oct 10, 2017
    On October 10, ITC filed a supplement to its permit application to the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
  • Posted Sep 29, 2017
    On September 29, 2017, ITC filed a major permit application with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. 

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 QUESTIONS? CONTACT US BCVSTORAGEPROJECT@ITCTRANSCO.COM