Energy Storage a game changer?


Nicholas Newman European Energy Review 5 February 2015.

-Electricity storage offers a practical solution to the chronic problem of intermittency in renewable energy supplies. It can promise lower energy costs and also serves to replace conventional standby fossil plants.

There are about 69 such electricity storage schemes in operation throughout Europe according to the European Association for the Storage of Energy. Pumped storage hydro schemes, of which Iberdrola’s 2000MW Cortes-La Muela in Spain is Europe’s largest, dominate the sector and account for 30 of these projects. The remaining schemes rely on non- pumped technologies, including 28 battery, 6 thermal and two hydrogen-based projects used throughout Europe. Growing dependence on renewables, alongside a widespread desire for a low carbon future, provide significant opportunities for energy storage: “Italy, UK, Germany and Ireland are likely to expand significantly from their current position”, predicts Isobel Evans, Marketing Manager, S&C Electric Europe Ltd. James Martin, Power Director of Mott MacDonald, notes that “sustained investment by major companies and many smaller start-ups are now bearing fruit.” However, incremental technological developments have proved insufficient for widespread adoption.

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