Energy storage is a rapidly developing technology in the renewable energy sector, and the idea of pairing solar energy with a battery storage system is becoming ever more popular in the industry. Combining solar plus storage offers all the benefits of a standalone solar panel installation, as well as added energy independence and a unique level of autonomy from the power grid.
This growth in the pairing of energy storage and renewable energy systems is evident on a larger scale too. Utility-scale solar systems, as well as large-scale wind power systems, have increasingly been paired with battery storage systems in recent years. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), their inventory of electric generators has shown the following growth in the co-location of solar/wind generation sites with battery systems:
2016: 19 Paired Sites (Solar/Wind & Battery Storage)
2019: 53 Paired Sites (Solar/Wind & Battery Storage)
What’s more, the trend of pairing solar/wind energy with an energy storage system is set to continue according to the EIA’s reporting on planned installations over the coming years.
2023: An additional 56 paired sites are expected.
The charts below, courtesy of the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), show the actual growth of renewable plus storage facilities since 2011, as well as the expected trend in growth up to 2023.
Perhaps the core benefit of a solar plus storage energy system is the level of control it offers in terms of energy supply and consumption. With a battery storage system, the energy is generated and then utilized as needed—not necessarily at the time of production. This means that renewable energy can be effectively distributed at peak demand times. Some of the other benefits and uses of batteries alongside renewable energy systems include:
Transmission & Distribution Support
Integration of Renewables into Existing Grid Infrastructure
In terms of location, the distribution of these renewable/storage hybrid systems is quite uneven, with just nine states accounting for over 90% of total hybrid capacity. In fact, just ten different facilities account for over half of the operating hybrid capacity in the country. Texas is the current nationwide leader in terms of hybrid capacity, with 46% of current total capacity located there.
The chart below, courtesy of the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), details the current hybrid operating capacity of the top ten states. Additionally, it outlines the planned capacity for these ten states moving forward.
Want to pair your solar system with an energy storage system? Get in touch today. YSG will assist you in making your ideal solar + storage project a reality. Send us an email, or call at 212.389.9215 to get started.
YSG Solar is a project development vehicle responsible for commoditizing energy infrastructure projects. We work with long-term owners and operators to provide clean energy assets with stable, predictable cash flows. YSG's market focus is distributed generation and utility-scale projects located within North America.