2021 reigns in a record year for the development of global energy storage, with 12.4 gigawatts of online energy storage capacity, in comparison to 1 gigawatt in 2016 (which was also then a record year!).
This increase in storage allows for battery-powered systems to generate energy for a longer time than ever before when other resources are unavailable. The discharge capacity now stands at 28 gigawatt-hours, almost triple that of 2020.
“In 2021, we can say with certainty that we’ve entered an era of supersize energy storage projects,” says Dan Gearino of Inside Climate News. What’s more, Wood Mackenzie, an energy research firm, predicts that by 2030, the world will have access to 70 gigawatts of energy storage.
The value in this increase of energy storage mainly lies in the ability for battery storage and renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, to work alongside each other. Further, these battery technologies will likely lead to advances in electric vehicles. Though the technology is still quite new, creating a hard-to-predict future, one thing is for certain: the energy storage boom of 2021 is significant and has global implications.