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15 Mar 2024, 13:30
Jack McGovan

Energy storage capacity continues solid growth in Germany, households lead the charge

Clean Energy Wire

With a turnover of over 15.7 billion euros, and a 46 percent growth increase in comparison to 2022, the energy storage sector’s expansion in Germany continues at a fast pace, according to industry data released by the German Association of Energy Storage Systems (BVES). A trend towards greater self-sufficiency, higher energy prices, and a need for flexibility and supply security are pushing the industry’s growth, the BVES said. At over 40 percent, households had the highest rate of growth and about two million one-family-households in the country are expected to use an energy storage system by the end of 2024. Demand for batteries continues to build up, and most of the growth in industry came from the expansion of charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, the association added. The toal capacity of household storage devices now has reached about 6 gigawatts, roughly equal to the capacity of Germany’s pumped hydroge storage installations, the association said.

However, BVES head Urban Windelen said that the sector isn’t reaching its maximum potential due to the shaky political framework. “Political and regulatory uncertainty remain the biggest hurdles for the industry,” he said. For example, the agency said that there is a growing demand for heat energy storage systems in heavy industry, but also a lack of incentives for decarbonisation. Moreover, a shortage of skilled workers likewise poses problems for the sector. Regardless, the association expects the storage sector to continue growing this year, with two thirds of companies predicting increases in turnover.

Energy storage will become key in the next phase of the energy transition, as Germany aims to cover 80 percent of power demand with renewable sources by 2030. A traditional electricity system doesn’t require much storage because power generation can be adjusted to match demand. This changes substantially as the system uses more renewable energy, in which power generation from wind turbines and solar PV systems depends on the weather.

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