Solar+storage to add most new battery storage capacity in the U.S. over next three years

More than half of the battery storage capacity added in the U.S. in the next three years will be paired with a solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant, bucking the historical trend of majority standalone sites.

Data from the Energy Information Administration estimates that 9.4 of 14.5 GW, or 63%, of battery storage capacity planned to come online through 2024 will be co-located with solar PV. The remaining capacity additions will be paired with wind or fossil fuel generators (1.3 GW) or will be placed on standalone sites (4 GW).

“Historically, most U.S. battery systems have been located at standalone sites,” Vikram Linga wrote for EIA. “Of the 1.5 GW of operating battery storage capacity in the United States at the end of 2020, 71% was standalone, and 29% was located onsite with other power generators.”

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Last week, the U.S. Dept. of Energy announced $17.9 million in funding for researching and development projects to scale up American manufacturing and reduce costs of flow battery and long-duration storage systems.

Energy storage advancements are crucial to the Biden administration’s goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

“We’re moving at lightning speed to harness renewables and access to long-duration storage is critical for dispatching this clean energy for use whenever and wherever it’s needed,” said Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “DOE’s investment to boost battery storage technology coupled with our first-ever Energy Storage for Social Equity Initiative will help generate jobs, build more resilient communities and ensure a cleaner, healthier environment for all Americans.”