From the Editor: Energy Storage Gives Us The Power of Flexibility

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When we consider the rapid rise of energy storage technology that we are witnessing all across the globe, it is key that we remember all of the reasons that this technology is and/or will be a key component in the grid of the future.  Today’s energy storage is not just about having a battery backup for a solar PV system (although consumers are using batteries this way in record numbers).  No, the rapid increase in energy storage technology is being driven by engineers all along the electricity spectrum from transmission operators who are deploying large-scale grid-connected energy storage to generate electricity when the grid is compromised through to distribution engineers who are using energy storage as a grid management tool to smooth out ramp events that are caused by rapid increases or decreases in electricity produced by solar PV or wind turbines. Further down the line, we find commercial electricity users installing energy storage on their buildings to lower their demand charges and finally there are homeowners who are examining how energy storage technologies might lessen their dependence on the grid or give them greater control over how and when they use grid electricity.  

Energy storage is therefore a cost-saving mechanism; a transmission asset; a micro-grid enabler; an efficiency driver and more.  That’s why there is so much interest in energy storage today and that’s why this technology is a major component in the grid of the future.

(This Letter from the Editor sets the stage for our March/April 2014 issue, one of our best yet.  If you haven’t checked it out yet, why not subscribe today? You can view our 100 percent digital issue on your tablet or computer. Who needs the Sunday Papers when you can sit back and relax with a cup of coffee or tea and Renewable Energy World Magazine? Plus, you can read more about the Nice Grid Project on pp. 36-42.)

 

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Jennifer Runyon
Jennifer Runyon has been studying and reporting about the world's transition to clean energy since 2007. As editor of the world's largest renewable energy publication, Renewable Energy World, she observed, interviewed experts about, and reported on major clean energy milestones including Germany's explosive growth of solar PV, the formation and development of the U.S. onshore wind industry, the U.K. offshore wind boom, China's solar manufacturing dominance, the rise of energy storage, the changing landscape for utilities and grid operators and much, much, more. You can reach her at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com Today, in addition to managing content on Renewable Energy World and POWERGRID International, she also serves as the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH, a globally recognized conference and expo for the transmission and distribution industry. In her role, she works in close cooperation with a large team of committed industry executives to shape the educational content for the event. She also helps assemble the renewable energy content for POWERGEN and helped launch the first Grid-Scale Storage Summit, a co-located event at HYDROVISION International. She has traveled to Germany to see onshore and offshore wind installations; Iceland to see geothermal energy in action; and France to see cutting-edge smart grids. In the U.S. she has visited and reported about bioenergy power plants in Florida, both large-scale and small-scale hydropower; and multiple wind farms, solar PV, and CSP installations. Formerly, she was the managing editor of Innovate Forum, an online publication that focused on innovation in manufacturing. Prior to that she was the managing editor at Desktop Engineering magazine. In 2008, she won an "Eddy Award" for her editing work on an article about solar trees in Vienna. In 2010, RenewableEnergyWorld.com was awarded an American Business Media Neal Award for its eNewsletters, which were created under her direction. She holds a Master's Degree in English Education from Boston University and a BA in English from the University of Virginia.

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