How Trump could be great for battery storage

How Trump could be great for battery storage

Deutsche Bank has described the global battery market as being at an inflection point, with global consumption expected to treble from 70Gwh in 2015 to 210GWh by 2018, and then more than double again to 535GWh by 2025.

The report, published on Thursday, said falling costs of technology – and particularly in the case of lithium-ion batteries – were one of the major drivers of the battery boom.

As we have witnessed in Australia with the latest Tesla Powerwall rollout, lithium-ion battery costs are on a downward trajectory, from $900/kWh in 2010 to $225/kWh in 2015 and on track to reach lows of $150/kWh by 2020, according to Deutsche.

Tesla/Panasonic li-ion costs, the report notes, are already below $200/kWh for cells and around $225/kWh for the entire battery pack, making them a cheaper-than-grid option for solar households already, as reported here.

The other factor driving the boom, says Deutsche, is policy: “Regulatory environment will likely be a critical driver of storage adoption rates and contrary to consensus views, detrimental solar policies could potentially act as a significant growth catalyst for storage sector.

“We expect rules related to solar feed-in tariffs or net metering to continue to change as solar penetration rates increase,” the report says.

In Australia, the report offers by way of example, “it is estimated that buying power from the grid can be three times more expensive than the value of locally generated solar power exported to the grid.”

This is good news for Australian consumers, offering yet another reason to believe that our market will be a global leader in affordable battery storage.

But it could also be good news for the battery market in America – and the global market by association – with its newly elected President vowing to scrap clean energy support mechanisms and focus its funding on “non-phoney” environmental causes.

According to the report, distributed generation (DG) sources are estimated to displace more than 320GW of new large-scale power plants globally between 2014 and 2023 and new DG capacity additions could potentially exceed added centralised generation capacity by as early as 2018.

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