What are the environmental benefits of the Iowa Stored Energy Park?
ISEP will make clean, environmentally friendly energy. With energy demand continuing to grow, utilities are supplementing their conventional energy resources with alternative,
renewable energy sources. Much of this
renewable resource will come from
intermittent wind energy. By making
the renewable wind dependable and
dispatchable on-demand, ISEP will help the
region maintain a reliable energy supply for the future.
Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES)
Of all known storage technologies,
CAES and pumped hydro are known to
potentially offer the largest and most
economical grid-scale alternatives.
However, there are very few available pumped
hydro sites in Iowa or the Upper Midwest.
Batteries and flywheel technologies will
have their place in the future, but they
generally offer smaller scale, lower energy
storage capabilities and higher costs then
How would ISEP affect air emissions?
ISEP is good for our children and good for the planet.
By enabling development of more wind energy
then would happen without ISEP, it will reduce emissions of mercury that put the health of our children at risk and it will reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses.
Who will use the electricity generated at ISEP?
A portion of the energy output of
ISEP will be owned and operated by
current ISEPA municipal utility members and
their customers. The balance of ISEP
output will be owned and used by other
regional cooperative and investor-owned
utilities and other entities. ISEP
represents an innovative, affordable, environmentally-friendly
How will the Iowa Stored Energy Park benefit Iowas electricity customers?
ISEP will help even out energy prices by bringing more wind energy to consumers
and businesses. Because ISEP will get much of its energy from clean, renewable wind facilities, utilities and customers
in Iowa and neighboring states will reduce the effects of
future fluctuations in fossil fuel prices.
What will the ISEP site look like?
The facility will be a state-of-the-art structure, meeting todays highest standards for environmental protection. This modern facility will showcase the latest equipment and innovative technology.
The CAES facility will be located where the geology is most suitable for underground storage.
Wind turbines to produce the wind energy are
and will be located throughout the region
where there are superior wind
Where will ISEP be built?
The Iowa CAES site will be located west
of Dallas Center, Iowa near Des Moines,
where there is an underground geological site for storing air.
Where will the
wind facilities for ISEP be built?
The wind energy to be used for ISEP
will come from wind machines located in
favorable wind regimes in Iowa and
surrounding states and owned by others.
In fact, many are in place and operating
already; with a lot more to come over the
next ten years. ISEP will purchase the
output of these wind machines and other
resources connected to the regional Midwest
Independent System Operator (MISO) power
grid, and use that energy to compress and
When will ISEP be built?
Testing and analysis of the ability to store the air underground is being conducted at
the ISEP site near Dallas Center, Iowa. When the results from the studies are completed, the project will move into the design phase, with
environmental and regulatory permitting,
equipment procurement and construction to follow. It is anticipated this electricity will
achieve commercial operation and be available to utilities and their customers in 2015.
Who will pay for ISEP?
The Iowa Stored Energy Park is a power supply project being developed by
or on behalf of 95 municipal utilities located in Iowa, Minnesota and the Dakotas, with additional funding from the
Iowa Power Fund and the Federal Department of Energy.
When current geological and other studies
are completed, project ownership will be
opened up to additional participants. The owners of the project will pay for construction
Where else is underground air storage used?
Currently, cavern air storage is in use in two other CAES locations: a 110 MW facility in Alabama and a 290 MW facility in Germany.
Multiple other CAES facilities are currently
under development elsewhere in the United
States. Using similar storage methods, natural gas is
routinely stored underground in many locations around the world, including several locations in Iowa.
How would ISEP use existing, proven technologies?
ISEPs unique operating characteristics combine traditional technology with todays innovative energy production and storage methods.
Most of the innovation at ISEP will happen
in the underground storage facility and
management of it. The above-ground CAES facilities
will use modern, well-proven and highly reliable equipment.