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Global energy storage market to see seven-fold growth in five years

May 5, 2021 PV InfoLink


China is stepping up energy storage deployment. On March 15, VRB Energy, a vanadium redox battery (VRB) technology developer, has agreed to build a 100 MW PV plant with a 100 MW/500 MWh integrated VRB in Hubei, China. The agreement includes the construction of a vanadium flow battery intelligent energy research and development (R&D) institute.

Meanwhile, the country’s first PV and ESS empirical experimental platform built by China State Power Investment Corporation has started construction in Daqing, Heilongjiang. A total investment of RMB 5.6 billion will be allocated to the platform during the 14th Five-Year-Plan period.

Additionally, authorities in Xi’an, Shaanxi Province, Qinghai Province, and Hainan Province have all introduced incentive subsidies and regulations for solar-plus-storage systems. Clearly, the Chinese local governments require PV developers to pair new projects with certain ratio of energy storage.

For instance, the Xi’an Industrial and Information Technology Bureau has released a consultation paper “Opinions of Furthering the Sound Development of PV Industry,” enouncing its supports for the application of solar-plus-storage systems, and providing subsidies for PV power stations integrated with ESS. This is the first subsidy policy tailor-made for ESS charging performances. Qinghai, on the other hand, has implemented the “renewable energy-plus-storage” integrated development pattern. In principle, storage capacity shall account for at least 10% of new project’s installed capacity and has a discharge time longer than 2 hours. The Qinghai government will financially support integrated projects with high ratio of storage and long discharge time in priority. In addition, the government is developing pumped hydro storage-plus-renewable energy projects.

Solar-plus-storage is already a growing trend. In fact, energy storage solutions bring stability and value to PV systems. ESS systems can reduce costs, integrate different renewable energies, and minimize environmental impacts, and thus improves the reliability and accessibility of renewable energies. InfoLink estimates that the global cumulative ESS installed capacity will exceed 150 GWh by 2025, with more than 45% of compound annual growth rate.

The Chinese authority’s advocacy for energy storage is not coming out of nowhere. These projects were settled under the 14th-Five-Year-Plan, of which the ESS shall account for no less than 10% of the installed capacity for renewable projects and at least 2 hours of discharge duration. While back in September 2017, the Chinese government had already released its first strategy and document on energy storage. As the global capital of PV industry, China is expected to lead the development of renewable industry with its promotions for the mutual development of both PV and energy storage.


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Keywords PV ESS
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