Why do we need long-duration energy storage?

In its ongoing Energy Storage Insights series, Azelio breaks down everything you need to know about storage technologies. In part two, we take on a critical question: why do we need long-duration energy storage?

Last time in Energy Storage Insights, we looked at what long-duration energy storage, or LDES, technologies offer. Now let’s look at the why, and examine society’s need for energy storage.

Switching off the lights

The grid systems of today are not working as they should. Businesses and consumers around the world can’t access the power they need to develop and prosper. Last summer, in Japan and Australia, governments were asking citizens to switch off and conserve energy. In part one of this series we touched upon the current situation in South Africa. Periods of mandated load-shedding (when electricity use needs to be reduced to remove power from the system and avoid excessive strain), are causing severe problems all over the country.

People around the world need a stable power supply, now more than ever. Unfortunately, the global economic downturn – plus cost of living and energy crises in many countries – is leading to a lack of funding to maintain and repair our ageing grids. In its World Energy Outlook 2022 report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) called attention to the urgent need for more investment in the global energy sector.

A climate emergency

We also need to consider that we’re in a fight against climate change. We need to fully integrate renewables into our energy systems, as soon as we can. This will dramatically cut our CO2 emissions and build a more sustainable society. But there’s a challenge with achieving that integration on a large scale. When you introduce new streams of electricity, you must be able to maintain system balance and manage supply and demand. That takes us back to energy storage!

Supplying clean power through long-duration energy storage adds the flexibility needed for us to introduce renewable energy at the high levels needed. Then we can achieve our net-zero goals and provide reliable electricity and heat – without costly interruptions – to those that need it.

A bright outlook

There are positive signs for renewables and energy storage. Both the US and EU are adding incentives to promote clean technologies. Solar and wind installation are on the rise. In fact, the world will add as much renewable power in the next 5 years as it did in the past 20. LDES is now recognised as a cost-efficient way to leave behind fossil fuels and develop the energy systems of tomorrow.

Next time in Energy Storage Insights

Many exciting long-duration energy storage technologies are on the way, or available on the market and supplying clean power today. In part three of our series, Azelio presents the leading technology categories of LDES.

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Azelio is a Swedish cleantech company. We have developed an ingenious long duration energy storage technology, providing dispatchable electricity and usable heat for all hours of the day – with zero emissions and at a very competitive cost.

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