Many governments and organisations around the world are setting ambitious goals for reducing emissions within the electrical grid, with Australia no different in pursuing that goal.
In fact, the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) has been among the most recent to make that commitment, setting an ambitious energy goal to rely on renewables for 90 per cent of total generation by 2020. While legislation to achieve this has been active since 2013, recent weeks have also seen the launch of a new strategy to further advance this objective.
The latest announcement involves the establishment of new funding for research and development, specifically targeted to renewable technologies. These three are solar, wind and battery storage technology, which have each been identified as the most promising areas for future research to support this goal.
As well as this investment, the Territory is also seeing continuing to support the renewable energy sector. Reverse auctions, where companies bid to provide the cheapest electricity, have already supported the development of 40 megawatts of future solar generation capacity.
The ACT’s Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, emphasised these new projects would lead to a much greater investment into solar power throughout the Territory.
“These developments, subject to planning approval, will position the ACT as Australia’s Solar Capital and a national leader in solar innovation and investment,” stated Mr Corbell.
As well as new grid-scale generation capacity, the initiative also involves developing the renewable capacity of the ACT’s built environment. The current plan involves the establishment of a solar innovation precinct and further investment into solar and battery storage within Canberra’s urban centre.
While the ACT is seeing some of the strongest commitments to battery storage, other organisations are looking for innovative ways to unlock the country’s potential for storing energy.
New industry roadmap for battery storage
In response to the growth of battery storage efforts, the Clean Energy Council has released an industry roadmap that considers how battery technology will be implemented within the Australian grid.
The aim of the roadmap is to provide an overview of the steps required to create a robust energy storage market within Australia. Among the key recommendations that arose from the research include the development of standards and regulations for storage devices, within both residential and commercial settings.
As well as proposing changes to the country’s regulatory framework, the report also suggested a consumer guide for residential installations and an annual industry survey to better understand how the sector is growing and responding to this new opportunity.
Clean Energy Council Chief Executive Kane Thornton emphasised the benefits this new generation technology would bring for home owners and businesses looking to reduce their ongoing costs.
“When you talk about the next big technology breakthrough in clean energy, energy storage comes up time and time again,” Mr Thornton said.
“Energy storage technologies are a game changer for the Australian energy market – they offer greatly increased flexibility, reliability and efficiency when it comes to the way we generate and use electricity. This translates to lower costs and inevitable big changes to our energy system.”
Earlier research from the Clean Energy Council suggests this sector has the potential to reach 3,000 megawatts of installed storage capacity by 2030. These proposed regulations for the sector will be essential for achieving this potential and unlocking new storage applications across the country.
MPower are the industry experts at installing battery storage technology, on projects of all sizes and right across Australia. To learn more about our capabilities in this growing market, you can contact us today.