Jobs and innovation in the Energy Storage Market
The numbers are in and they are impressive, with an estimated 32,500 on-grid and off-grid energy storage systems installed in Australia up to the end of 2016, and a further 20,000 energy storage systems installed in 2017. But it’s the tip of the iceberg: a high growth scenario puts energy storage systems at 450,000 by 2020, with the combination of residential and commercial energy storage delivering 3 GWh of distributed storage. And it’s a jobs bonanza, up to 35,000 Australians could be working in the energy storage industry by 2020.
These are the findings of the Smart Energy Council’s comprehensive analysis of the Australian Energy Storage Market covering residential, commercial, large-scale, on-grid, off-grid and micro-grid energy storage, and projections for uptake from 2017 to 2020.
The report identifies 55 existing, planned or proposed large-scale energy storage projects in Australia, that (excluding pumped hydro) represent over 4 GWh of storage.
In addition 120 large-scale solar projects totaling 9 GW of capacity have been completed, planned or are in the pipeline. Of those, 19 have been completed and another 36 have reached financial close. Most of those projects have the capacity to add storage and represent an opportunity additional to the 4 GWh identified above.
A range of factors influence high or low growth energy storage uptake, including
electricity prices and energy storage systems prices, along with Federal, State and Territory government policies and industry standards and perceptions of quality and safety.
The availability of trained installers and public perceptions of safety and quality also play a role.
Currently State Governments are driving energy storage policy through subsidies for batteries, and the phase out of high feed-in tariffs for solar PV is also providing an incentive for behind-the-meter batteries.
An unknown quantity it the lack of a reliability guarantee and an emissions guarantee that fell by the wayside with the proposed National Energy Guarantee.
The Smart Energy Council believes, however, an opportunity exists for governments and industry to work together to build a strong, safe and sustainable storage industry to increase consumer awareness of the benefits of storage and smart energy and to reform the energy market to provide access to value that storage can deliver.
In addition there are opportunities to support national training and skills development and develop evidence-based standards for energy storage systems installation and performance.
The full report can be found at www.smartenergycouncil.org.au
Report findings were based on a survey by the Smart Energy Council, interviews with key energy storage market participants, data from the Clean Energy Regulator and the Smart Energy Council’s Battery Finder project.
This analysis and report has been funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).