Grid-scale storage will play a significant role in the energy transition, providing important system services from short-term balancing and operating reserves, ancillary services for grid stability and deferment of investment in new transmission and distribution lines, to long-term energy storage and restoring grid operations following a blackout.

It is important when developing future assets to assess the types of services that the grid-scale storage will be expected to target, whilst providing flexibility to pivot into future markets as and when they arise. Aligning the appropriate services with the attributes of the specific location can allow the maximum benefit for all stakeholders to be achieved.

Batteries are the most scalable and cost effective type of grid-scale storage which can be deployed rapidly and with pinpoint precision to make the overall grid more efficient and resilient, regardless of the generation source. This makes the battery storage the true bridge to a clean energy future and a compelling story especially in regions like Australia.

Grid-scale batteries are projected to account for the majority of storage growth both in Australia and worldwide. In Australia 30 large-scale batteries were under construction at the end of 2021 and globally total installed capacity was 16 GW, most of which was added over the course of the previous five years.

The rapid scaling up of energy storage systems will be critical to address the hour‐to‐hour variability of renewable electricity generation on the grid, especially as their share of increases. Meeting rising flexibility needs while decarbonising electricity generation is a central challenge for the energy transition.

However, this is not without challenge specifically those related to appropriate project siting to minimise environmental impact, supply chain constraints, national electricity market reform, transmission investment, and grid connection, which continue to affect the commissioning of existing projects and the development of new ones.

It is generally acknowledged that meeting climate targets will only be achieved by decommissioning the existing fleets of carbon emitting generators and as the lowest cost form of electricity generation is renewable energy it is expected these generators will continue to be deployed to fill the developing supply gap. The variable nature of renewable energy will require grid-scale energy storage of varying durations to maintain a secure and reliable power system. Grid-scale batteries are ideally suited to provide short duration storage in the medium term and the batteries that maximise the full capability of their systems will be the ones that succeed.


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