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Long Duration Energy Storage
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"Long Duration Energy Storage"

Key To Achieving Power-Sector Decarbonization

Pressure is mounting for utilities and other electric power organizations to cut carbon emissions. In a recent survey of more than 200 electric power industry professionals conducted by Utility Dive and Mitsubishi Power, nearly 75% agreed that power system decarbonization was very important to the mission of their organization.

Renewable resources developed in the past decade have yielded large amounts of non-dispatchable system capacity. In the decades ahead — as large numbers of baseload coal and natural gas power plants are retired, to be replaced by even more renewables — utilities must find ways to effectively dispatch renewable power for hours, days or weeks at a time, or even seasonally. Large-scale energy storage will enable utilities to compensate for both the short-term intermittence and long-term seasonal availability variations of renewable resources.

Decarbonizing the electric power system requires adding vast amounts of renewable resources, especially intermittent solar and wind power. To ensure resource adequacy, clean energy must be stored so it can be dispatched as needed to meet system demand. Currently, lithium-ion battery storage is the most popular technology for short-duration energy storage (six hours or less). However, there is a strong need to dispatch stored clean power over longer durations. In our survey, 54% of participants who work for utilities (or other organizations that can directly deploy energy storage) said they needed storage that was dispatchable for eight to 24 hours at a time. Also, 35% said they needed to dispatch stored power for more than 24 hours at a stretch.

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