Solar Energy

What does energy storage look like over the next ten years?

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The U.S. power sector is in the midst of transformation to a cleaner, more modern infrastructure. By adding good policies and regulatory structure in place, it’s possible to achieve 50GWs of new battery storage installations by 2030. Current market projections indicate extraordinary growth for energy storage over the next decade.  Storage’s role is expanding to maintain and enhance the reliability, resilience, stability, and affordability of storage+electricity over the coming decade.

There are some requirements to complete before reaching the 50 GW goal. It will include a combination of strengthened policy support, such as the investment tax credit (ITC), for stand-alone storage facilities, as the continuation of emerging policies that remove barriers to market participation. The combination of a supportive policy context and a vital, clean energy economy will drive battery storage growth and set a course for 50GWs of new storage, keeping the power system reliable, resilient, and affordable.

California’s recent rolling blackouts have brought out predictions of California needing 12 to 15 GW of storage to keep the grid stable and robust. Since California is closing several fossil fuel infrastructures, some energy source is required for California’s nighttime. The Western grid connection is waning, not due to capacity but due to laws passed years ago. The open baseload would equal about $640 billion for battery backup.


Some storage products claim 20-year service lives using a modular approach, allowing for on-board refurbishing or replacing components and converting to the most advanced version of storage technology available. There are battery systems that come in a single package with the necessary power electronics built-in, making it easier to install. The use of lithium-ferrous-phosphate battery chemistry is considered safer and long-lasting than the more energy-dense chemistries designed for car batteries and repackaged in boxes for homes.

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The rise of home solar, and intermittent renewables, more broadly, spurred the industry to find ways to store that power for use on demand. The residential battery market remains minuscule compared to needs where the investment currently makes economic sense. The U.S. installs a few thousand residential batteries per quarter, and that’s after precipitous growth from where it was two years ago.

Last week’s question, “If Democrats win the white house will ITC be renewed?” “83% of the respondents said, Yes.”

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