Clean Energy Council says an increase in energy storage likely

A report commissioned by the Clean Energy Council (CEC) on energy storage has found that Australia might store up to 3000 megawatt-hours by 2030. This increased demand for storage will come from the reduction in the price of storage, such as batteries, and an increased use of renewables.

“If this happens on a large scale it will force a change in the business model of how we fund the poles and wires network, unlock the full potential of Australia’s enormous renewable energy resources and accelerate the shift to a clean energy economy. So while there are obvious benefits to electricity storage, there will also be major challenges to integrate storage into our electricity supply,” says CEC Strategic Policy Manager, Tim Sonnreich.

Mr Sonnreich said storage technology could be built and operated as an add-on to a power station, installed by people in their homes as part of a large and flexible smart grid system, or set up as a stand-alone storage facility, like the data processing centres used by IT companies.

“But should storage be owned and operated by network businesses, retailers, generators, individuals or all of the above? Storage interacts with the market in a very different way to other technologies and it will take policy makers time to consider these and many more issues that will arise as it becomes more common in our electricity system,” he said.

Some common types of energy storage that are in current use include batteries, solar hot water systems, pumped hydro and flywheel storage.

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