Final parliamentary report partly heeded
The newly formed Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (DBEIS) has partly heeded the October- released parliamentary committee report of their predecessors. In brief, the outgoing report urged the new committee, and Britain as a whole, to focus on the introduction of large-scale electricity storage systems. Encouragingly, the DBEIS has followed through and announced plans for the winter of 2020/21 which include the purchase of low-carbon energy storage.
It’s clear to most that the use of deep-cycle and solar batteries will ensure that energy from intermittent renewable sources such a solar and wind are available at all times. But Angus MacNeil, chair of the previous energy committee had emphasised this, saying that energy storage systems are absolutely vital for both producing clean energy and making it widely available to the public.
“It will mean we don’t have to wait for the sun to shine or the wind to blow to get our energy from renewables,”
Are incentives still skewed in wrong direction?
The October-released report also identified a problem in the current legislature which meant that incentives were skewed in support of fossil fuel power plants such as diesel. The outgoing committee suggested policy changes and recommended the introduction of a nation-wide electricity demand reduction program that could cut utility bills and CO2 output, while simultaneously increasing the efficiency of energy systems.
We’re yet to see whether this trend of legislation will be continued, or whether the previous suggestions, such as calling for the UK to redesign existing storage schemes and develop new ones will be followed, but it seems to be a positive start for the new committee.
A small measure of commitment
The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy have been urged to commit publicly to becoming a world leader in power storage by committing to a four year storage target. While they haven’t done so yet, the purchase of low-carbon battery storage being approved for the first time speaks to a measure of commitment that will relieve many in the industry.
At SEC we know the benefits of energy storage go beyond the environment. Large-scale storage systems which utilise deep-cycle batteries could transform the way the UK uses its renewable energy. It is estimated that consumers could make a saving of about 7 billion pounds ($8.7bn) a year from these schemes so we’re unequivocally in support of a Department that will follow through and make the necessary legislature changes.