Canada: An Enel X Storage System for Amhil’s factory

A manufacturing company with over 40 years of history and a strong market share in North America and Europe. A business district witnessing constant economic growth where over 60 companies of the Fortune 500 list have set up their headquarters. An energy market that sees some of the highest energy bills of all North America. These are the three key elements to fully understand the partnership that paved the way for a Battery Energy Storage System set up in Canada by Enel X for Amhil North America.

Efficiency, conservation, sustainability

Amhil North America is a company specializing in food services packaging with factories in Canada and the United States. Every day, an endless variety of containers comes out of their factory floor at Mississauga, a suburb of Toronto on the banks of Lake Ontario,: from ordinary plastic cups for coffee and soft drinks to packaging for foods and sweets, like the well-known Banana Split ice cream or take-away servings.

“We are one of the top users of electricity in our geographic region” as Steve Renwick, co-plant manager of Amhil, explains. This is a technology-intensive company, as it leverages advanced solutions to streamline its production lines while focusing heavily on sustainable practices like waste recycling policies, as well as fostering the widespread use of renewables, all part of a decarbonization effort to attain higher levels of energy efficiency and cost savings.

“For years, we have taken a proactive approach to manage and optimize our energy usage, particularly during peak periods. With the new energy storage facility, we will benefit from significant cost savings, additional demand response revenues, all while reducing our overall energy dependence” said Mark Johnston, VP Manufacturing of Amhil North America, introducing the agreement with Enel X to create a bespoke Battery Energy System for the Mississauga facility.

Li-Ion batteries and DER.OS software

The 2.34 MW/4.7 MWh lithium-ion energy storage system, is installed and operated by Enel X at Amhil’s facility in Mississauga, a suburb of Toronto on the banks of Lake Ontario.

Under the agreed terms, Enel X purchased, installed and operates the battery on behalf of Amhil North America, and share the savings which are created by Enel X Distributed Energy Resources Optimization Software (DER.OS) that controls the battery.

The DER.OS platform analyzes Amhil’s energy consumption patterns and executes a control strategy to maximize total economic value from all available value streams. Enel X also provides demand management services and enrolls the energy storage system in the Demand Response program of Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO).

The lithium-ion storage project expands upon Amhil North America’s existing relationship with Enel X, as a Demand Response customer since 2010. With the addition of the energy storage system, Amhil improves and increases benefits from its demand response program, while adding financial savings from managing peak charges. The storage system is aimed at helping Amhil save 20% in energy expenditure over the life of the 11-year contract, started in 2018.

Added value from storage

Demand response programs pay large energy consumers, such as manufacturing facilities, data centers, and commercial real estate companies, to adjust their power consumption, with the aim to stabilize the grid. Demand response provides greater grid flexibility, stability, and more efficient use of power infrastructure, aiming to help electricity prices affordable for all consumers.

The Enel X storage system is designed to create additional value by optimizing the use of the battery for IESO’s wholesale demand response program. The energy intelligence software, DER.OS allows Amhil North America to capitalize on its energy storage system by participating in the IESO program, which pays large energy consumers for being on standby ready to reduce their electricity consumption in response to grid system needs, as well as providing incremental payments if and when they are dispatched.

Fresh energy for Ontario

By tapping into the energy stored in the battery, Amhil North America aims to reduce its energy consumption when required by the grid to contribute to its stability, without any impact on the company’s overall operations.

Enel X North America is currently the largest commercial and industrial aggregator of demand response in Ontario with about 200 MW across approximately 400 customer sites.

Enel X sees the Amhil North America project as a new step in the development of storage systems solutions in Ontario while expanding its energy storage footprint in Canada.

Earlier in 2018, Enel X launched its first energy storage project in Canada: a 1 MWh lithium-ion behind-the-meter battery system at Algoma Orchards, a family-owned commercial orchard in the Durham region in Ontario.

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