Big Batteries Make Big Impact
December 04, 2023
A recent Wall Street Journal piece paints large-scale batteries as an all-season savior. Before 2020, large-scale batteries were a novelty. Today, they are more of a necessity. Batteries in Texas are credited with helping avoid a blackout in September 2023 when a transmission line problem threatened the ISO. ERCOT reports that battery storage makes up nearly 60% of the Texas projects asking to connect to the grid, far more than any other source.
In addition to summer peaks, batteries deliver when winter strains the grid with peaks both in the morning and evening, when low temperatures increase heating and cooking demand.
U.S. developers are planning record amounts of large installations across 29 states, according to the American Clean Power Association and energy consultant Wood Mackenzie. The sector has seen a sharp increase in additions even as the pace of delivering other clean-energy projects has slowed. Inflation and supply-chain disruptions that slowed projects starting in 2021 have stabilized, and this year the industry is seeing an accelerated recovery. More than 1,500 MW of battery storage was added to the grid in the second quarter.