We look into the innovations and the growing challenges of storing energy produced by renewable sources.
As the energy sector moves increasingly towards green transition, new challenges are emerging. One of the main disadvantages of renewable energy sources – their dependence on potentially inconsistent weather – is thus drawing attention to energy storage systems, which can store and provide power according to demand.
Growing in popularity along with the increasing demand for more clean energy, this type of distributed generation contributes with a number of benefits such as electrical energy loss reduction in the distribution system, reduction of voltage fluctuations, increasing reliability, power quality improvement, energy cost reduction, and increased customer satisfaction.
While renewable storage options also come with their unique considerations, among which are protection settings, power system stability, regulation, and financing, the industry is going above and beyond in its efforts to tap into the potential of the quickly expanding field.
The evolution of renewable storage
With the growing importance of storing renewable energy in order to use it more efficiently, energy companies have a crucial role to play in advancing and navigating the industry, developing new solutions to some relatively new problems.
“We expect the industry leaders to be at the forefront of net-zero carbon and sustainability strategies, with many already adopting green technologies such as solar panels on warehouse roofs, low or zero-emission fleet vehicles, and other energy efficient solutions,” says James Smith, UK managing director of cube-based warehouse automation company AutoStore.
Indeed, any company in the storage solution industry has the opportunity to benefit from solar energy, given the expansive sizes of warehouse roofing. However, more traditional companies will have to face the changing conditions of the market, as many incentives will be put in place to encourage greener options and discourage higher polluters.
“Those companies wanting to operate in urban environments and city centres of the future will need to adopt green energy solutions or be prepared to pay large energy tax premiums linked to emissions, which will likely make them uncompetitive against those businesses that can demonstrate their green credentials,” Smith says.
At this pivotal time, when the energy storage market and the number of storage technologies being developed are growing at a rapid rate, energy storage is becoming central to the development of subsidy-free clean energy projects, which usually ensure zero-carbon electricity at reduced costs for consumers.
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