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UK energy storage industry prepared for significant growth

UK energy storage industry prepared for significant growth
 

A significant number of large energy storage projects are in the pipeline for the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

 

Over the last few years, the UK has experienced a considerable rise in new applications for battery storage driven by the rise in renewables and the DS3 scheme, introduced to enable the grid to integrate with non-synchronous energy production from renewables.

As a result, battery storage in the UK has increased consistently with auctions and procurement activity from the National Grid generating additional spikes in further deployment. Today, we are seeing even more signs of growth, with further development of existing sites and the planning of new sites. As the industry continues to expand, there is a general consensus that we are seeing a trend towards longer duration batteries. Changes to the de-rating in the Capacity Market have further increased the rate of changes as revenues for short duration batteries decreased as a result.

Further focus on differing revenue streams and trading opportunities opening up to the battery storage, the business case for longer duration batteries is becoming more credible. This is proven in the types of projects in development now and the ones planned for the future.

Battery storage developers in the UK are having to consider flexibility in their plans, with a focus on longer timelines. Initial planning documents with battery details often lack clear details and are usually covered in regards to the overall footprint instead of the capacity, with the MW and MWh not covered until later in the process. The changes in the global battery industry have created new opportunities as battery prices continue to fall, enabling longer duration batteries to become economically viable.

Battery Storage development in Ireland

The battery storage market in Ireland has been a little slower to take off as developers held off for the details of the DS3 scheme to emerge. The DS3 scheme is expected to support the procurement of battery storage and to meet specific requirements and combine various services into packages. The initial round of projects due to receive contracts are now under construction and expected to be operational next year. Now the first round of tenders has taken place, developers are waiting for the next round and exploring new opportunities through volume uncapped procurement.

At present, there are 2.1GW of battery storage projects in the pipeline within the Republic of Ireland, with a further 350MW located in Northern Ireland. Approximately 500MW of these projects have gained planning approval and include a grid connection contract. Project developers are keeping a close eye on the DS3 and exploring how experience in other markets can be utilised to new project development in Ireland.

There is an additional 1.6GW of projects in the planning process, including those that are approved and those waiting for approval. The next stage for planning approval will include an application for a grid connection contract. While these projects have an extended development timeline, they form an ongoing market in the country. Industry professionals believe that once these projects are ready for construction, the market opportunities will look very different from now.

 

Details of all projects in both the UK and Ireland are available from Solar Media Market Research in our UK Battery Storage Project Database Report and Republic of Ireland Battery Storage Project Database Report. These reports are updated in real time and released monthly: visit our website here to find out how to access the data.