Energy Storage Offers a New Approach to Transmission and Distribution Infrastructure Upgrades

In an article for Utility Dive, Navigant Research says falling costs, faster build times, and a smaller physical footprint make energy storage an attractive option for T&D upgrade deferral

Grid operators around the world continue to recognize the benefits of energy storage technologies, and perhaps one of the most intriguing applications is its ability to defer investments in conventional transmission and distribution (T&D) infrastructure.

In an article for Utility Dive, Alex Eller, research analyst at Navigant Research, says falling costs, faster build times, and a smaller physical footprint make energy storage an attractive option for utilities in need of upgrades due to changing demand patterns, congestion due to the development of renewable generation in remote areas, and the desire to improve the reliability of electricity supply for customers.

“Energy storage systems (ESSs) providing T&D upgrade deferral can be a disruptive force in the industry as they allow for a more efficient deployment of capital to meet evolving grid needs and can enable the development of new business models,” Eller said.

As the energy storage market matures, Eller added that it will be critical for storage providers to determine how to structure their business models to take advantage of additional revenue streams while still ensuring the reliability of core T&D deferral benefits.

“Storage industry stakeholders should look to develop new business models, and be actively involved in ongoing regulatory processes, to ensure that the full benefits of the technology are well understood and can be realized,” he said.

For more information on this topic, read the full article and check out Eller’s report, Energy Storage for Transmission and Distribution Upgrade Deferral.

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