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New York’s Inter-Agency Fire Safety Working Group


Energy Storage and New York’s Climate Goals

Energy storage facilities play a critical role in the state’s efforts to reduce the emissions that contribute to climate change and help the state achieve its ambitious climate goals under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act) Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page., which codified 1,500 MW of energy storage by 2025 and 3,000 MW by 2030.

As New York State transitions to renewable energy technologies like wind and solar, energy storage will play a critical role by providing power when the wind isn’t blowing, or the sun isn’t shining. Energy storage will increase the resilience and efficiency of New York’s electric grid and can stabilize the supply of energy during peak electric usage and help keep critical systems like those found in hospitals online during an outage.

Energy storage systems offer the following benefits to New Yorkers:

  • Integrate with wind and solar to enable our transition to a fully decarbonized electric system
  • Deliver electricity to meet the demand of customers and increase grid reliability
  • Serve as a back-up energy source
  • Supply energy to a home, to a business, to a community, or to the electric grid
  • Provide economic and environmental benefits

Inter-Agency Fire Safety Working Group

On July 28, 2023, Governor Kathy Hochul announced the creation of an Inter-Agency Fire Safety Working Group to ensure the safety and security of energy storage systems across the state, following fire incidents at facilities in Jefferson, Orange, and Suffolk Counties and directed the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES), Office of Fire Prevention and Control (OFPC), New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Department of Public Service (DPS), and the Department of State (DOS) to lead the Working Group to independently examine energy storage facility fires and safety standards.

The Working Group will gather information from incidents and advice from experts to help prevent fires and ensure emergency responders have the necessary training and information to prepare and deploy resources in the event of a fire.

Additionally, the Working Group has been collaborating with national labs and other nation-leading subject matter experts to review all existing codes and testing procedures pertinent to the development and electrification of battery energy storage systems.

The primary focus areas of the working group include:

  1. Conduct an Incident Analysis for East Hampton, Warwick, and Chaumont incidents inclusive of:
    1. a. Examining testing for contaminants and report out a summary of findings (complete, December 2023)
    2. b. Reviewing emergency response actions and data (in progress)
    3. c. Accessing and examining Root Cause Analysis (in progress)
    4. d. Compile all preliminary Working Group findings, data, and other relevant materials and send to National Labs to review (in progress)
  2. Conduct a full review of today’s Codes, Standards, and Regulations and provide a summary of recommendations. (draft complete, January 2024)
  3. Conduct field assessments of in-service commercial energy storage projects and revise NYSERDA inspection checklist with lessons learned. (in progress)
  4. Create a final report that summarizes all the findings and recommendations of the Working Group. The findings and resulting recommendations will establish New York as a national and international leader in fire safety and stationary energy storage systems. (in progress)

Draft Fire Code Recommendations Report

On February 6, 2024, NYSERDA requested public comment [PDF] from subject matter experts and interested stakeholders to evaluate and provide feedback on a draft Fire Code Recommendations Report [doc] produced by the Working Group.

The draft recommendations were also discussed at a public webinar on February 15, 2024. View the webinar recording Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. to learn more about the working group’s recommendations. Comments were due on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. The Code Council Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. plans to release the updated recommendations for public comment again in June 2024 through the "Rule in Development" process for the Fire Code of New York State.

Any questions should be directed in writing to [email protected].

Press Releases to Date:

Other Energy Storage and Safety Resources: