Grid Energy Storage a $35B Market by 2020

Coming on the heels of yesterday’s announcement that California is moving closer to setting grid energy storage mandates for utilities in the state, today Pike Research released a new report that says the grid energy storage market could reach as much as $35 billion by 2020.

According to the research company, demand is being driven by several key trends including the proliferation of renewable energy from variable sources such as wind and solar, the expansion of utility smart grid initiatives, and the introduction of plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles.  The new report, “Energy Storage on the Grid,” indicates that the market will increase from $1.5 billion in 2010 to $35.3 billion annually by 2020.

Pike Research analyst David Link said that today utilities use grid energy storage to mitigate wind and solar energy variability, for load following and for renewable energy time shifting. “In the coming years,” said Link, “the number of applications for energy storage on the grid will expand to include the opportunity for utilities to defer transmission and distribution (T&D) capital upgrades, time of use energy cost management for the commercial and industrial (C&I) segments, and conventional energy time shifting.”

Of storage technologies Pike research sees major growth in the areas of the compressed air energy storage (CAES), Li-ion batteries, and flow batteries.  Other storage technologies in use today include pumped hydro and sodium sulfur (NAS) batteries.


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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. 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 for the transmission and distribution industry. You can reach her at

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