A new report documents the democratization of renewables, energy storage and electric vehicles in America. (more…)
Fueled by cheap battery costs, wind and solar power are poised to produce nearly 50% of the world’s electricity by 2050, according to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance report released Tuesday.
Why it matters: Renewable energy is getting cheaper as its technologies reach greater economies of scale. Notable this year are the falling prices for batteries that store energy generated by the wind and sun, which have become cheaper and easier to implement than previously forecast.
The benefits energy storage can provide in terms of power grid support and flexibility are becoming clear, but creating the right market mechanisms and rate designs will be critical to scaling up energy storage deployment, federal and state officials said.
As much as 40% of grid-connected battery storage projects that have been announced worldwide propose co-location with solar PV, from a pipeline of more than 10GW, analysts at IHS Markit have said. (more…)
ExxonMobil has much to answer for when the topic is climate change, environmental destruction, and the creation of the global refugee crisis, but it is finally waking up to the full bottom line advantages of killing off coal. Last year Bloomberg noted that ExxonMobil has been funding scores of renewable energy programs, and now the company has upped the ante with $20 million in funding for a new energy initiative managed by Stanford University’s Precourt Institute for Energy.
Now renewables and batteries are taking over.
Over the past decade, coal has been increasingly replaced by cheaper, cleaner energy sources. US coal power production has dropped by 44% (866 terawatt-hours [TWh]). It’s been replaced by natural gas (up 45%, or 400 TWh), renewables (up 260%, or 200 TWh), and increased efficiency (the US uses 9%, or 371 TWh less electricity than a decade ago). (more…)
While breakthroughs could be a decade away, the lithium metal battery could offer a major leap in capability for electric vehicles and the grid.
While lithium-ion batteries are undergoing an historic scale-up, researchers are also hard at work looking for what battery technology might come next.
MIT professor Yet-Ming Chiang has launched his latest storage bet, a flow battery startup designed to make renewable energy directly competitive with fossil fuels (see “24M’s Batteries Could Better Harness Wind and Solar Power”).