Europe 'losing energy storage space race'

Nov 10, 2020 01:37 PM ET
  • Wood Mackenzie claims government auctions need to incentivise flexible power
Europe 'losing energy storage space race'
Image: Cater Jonas

Europe is readied to shed the worldwide energy storage space race unless federal government public auctions start to incentivise flexible power, according to brand-new research from Wood Mackenzie.

The researchers stated that the US as well as China are increase energy storage compared with Europe.

Nevertheless, Wood Mackenzie principal expert Rory McCarthy stated Europe will remain to have proportionally a lot more variable renewable resource (VRE), such as wind as well as solar, than any other areas.

" While delivering low-cost, low-carbon power in wealth, the non-dispatchable nature of VRE provides a flexibility obstacle for power systems," he said.

" Particularly over the 2020 coronavirus lockdown months, we experienced the effect of high VRE on the system, leading to low as well as adverse power costs. This indicates an absence of system flexibility," McCarthy included.

" Energy storage will certainly be at the leading edge of conference this obstacle, as the innovation can give much-needed flexibility with zero carbon discharges, while keeping power rates a lot more secure and inexpensive for completion consumer," he said.

According to Wood Mackenzie numbers, EMEA-- the majority of which contains Europe implementations-- composed 44% of the worldwide market in 2014.

This declined to 30% in 2014 and also is anticipated to further decrease to 20% by 2025 and 13% by 2030.

The front-of-the-meter (FTM) crossbreed storage market, which is key to energy storage success, has seen a similar fad over the last three years, it said.

McCarthy claimed: "The worldwide FTM crossbreed storage space market is taking off as hybridisation supplies advantages including giving a weather condition reliant generator the capacity to send off as needed. Nevertheless, in spite of this, there have just been a handful of deployments in Europe.

" If we look at the US, which is the biggest storage development market, the pipe in this region has the prospective to comprise 49% of worldwide collective GWh capacity by 2030.

" Why does this market have such a healthy and balanced pipeline?

" Today it is driven by utility procurement programs and also a generous ITC tax obligation credit scores. Maybe less evident is its regulatory framework.

" Vertically incorporated energies-- those that can be a store, network driver and generator under the very same organisation-- offer a large swathe of US consumers.

" These energies can analyze their whole system portfolio, operational as well as distribution requirements and also run a tender on that particular basis.

" Ultimately, they can get with the most affordable cost mix of modern technologies to supply a whole system option, therefore offering the most effective investor return while guaranteeing premium quality power is provided."

He added that consequently, renewables and also power storage are outcompeting alternate flexibility company, such as gas peakers, in a boosting number of purchases.

But in Europe, the picture is different, Wood Mackenzie claimed

The area's standalone or hybrid project pipeline is small contrasted to the remainder of the globe, according to Wood Mackenzie.

In comparison to the US regulatory structure, market liberalisation has actually produced decoupling within the power industry, the experts claimed.

McCarthy said: "So, the situation for storage in Europe is specified by the bigger market gamers.

" Not-- as in the United States contrast-- a leading down utility assessing the best entire system remedy.

" The suggestion gets on a merchant basis with higher dangers and also funding barriers."

Wood Mackenzie claimed that although there is a lack of storage advancement, there is a slowly raising acknowledgment of the need for flexibility and storage in Europe.

McCarthy stated: "The European Commission currently calls for reasonable power storage involvement in capacity and secondary markets through its Clean Energy Package, which is progression.

" However, unlike merchant opportunities that can bolster an energy PPA value in the United States, these will remain to belong to the core storage space value proposal, either as small markets that quickly fill, as we have actually seen in the UK as well as German frequency auctions, or developed for possessions that mostly market energy, not power or capability services."

He stated that the primary course to market for VRE is via government public auctions.

Yet current renewable auctions provide little or no value for flexibility, for this reason the absence of reputable hybrid project pipeline advancement compared to worldwide equivalents, he added.

McCarthy said: "For the marketplace to create a first pipe of projects, different auction pots must be opened for crossbreed renewables projects.

" These public auctions must be made to incentivise ideal crossbreed system configurations, while leaving sufficient exposure to market pressures to enable the advancement of other services and also profits around them.

" This would incentivise the use of flexible options and also power storage by supplying power when it is needed most, not just when the sun beams or the wind impacts.

" There will be a proportion that take a totally seller course to market but it's likely that the main course to net zero will be public auction, so these need to be significantly subjected to market pressures to help the market endure itself.

" This ensures there is enough flexibility to maintain the system secure and power prices budget friendly, inevitably for the benefit of the end customer.

" Hybrid PPA projects will additionally likely evolve in this tale as corporates start to materially value the significance of real web absolutely no power.

" For instance, not just 'asserting' 100% renewables via PPAs and renewables credit ratings yet matching in real-time, 24/7, usage of power with sustainable generation. We saw this a couple of months back, with Google dedicating to being powered exclusively by renewable energy by 2030."

If European policy manufacturers do not start to acknowledge the growing flexibility gap and develop structures to resolve it, the market will likely be underprepared.

This can cause system and also market prices coming to be much more volatile as well as unpredictable than is necessary, claimed Wood Mackenzie.

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