Research shows that given the intermittency of wind and solar power generation, there is a growing demand for energy storage systems to provide 24/7 power.
India currently has a cumulative installed energy storage capacity of 27.2GWh of energy storage systems, 7.7GWh of energy storage projects under bidding, and 1GWh of pumped storage hydropower projects under development.
Bids from Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) and National Thermal Power Corporation of India (NTPC) totalled 7.6GWh, indicating strong growth in energy storage projects.
India's energy storage sector is expected to see greater growth by 2030 as battery manufacturing capacity increases, reducing overall production costs.
The two-day Mercom India Solar Summit 2022 took place on July 28 in New Delhi, India, and discussed issues related to energy storage technology and markets under the theme "Energy Storage Systems: What Are We Waiting For?" Panelists shared lessons learned from the global energy storage market, the role of short- and long-duration energy storage, and technologies that can address various pain points.
Regarding the demand for energy storage projects, Naveen Khandelwal, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Mercom Capital Group, said, “In addition to increasing the installed renewable energy capacity, there is also a need to increase the proportion of renewable energy in the grid. Very important. We need to make sure that renewable energy is dispatchable, which can be done by adding energy storage capacity.”
Khandelwal suggested that India should pay more attention to various energy storage technologies, which will help India achieve its energy goals.
He said: "Lithium-ion batteries have become synonymous with energy storage systems. But the problem is that it is not feasible to use only one energy storage technology. There is a need for multiple energy storage technologies for long-term and short-term options. Obviously, the energy storage space Innovating. Long-duration energy storage should be seen as a different asset class. Some of these challenges are perceived risk and lack of skilled labor. Investments and lenders should support innovation and eliminate risk awareness. And India should integrate the entire energy ecosystem , in which the energy storage system will play an important role.”
Sumitomo Corporation vice-president Upma Koul added that most components of energy storage technology can be manufactured in India, stressing the importance of long-term planning.
Sanskriti Dubey, Marketing Director, Fluence, said: “Energy storage has a promising future in India and will soon become mainstream. India should create a level playing field. Setting an energy storage obligation target is a big step in this direction. .And setting an energy storage deployment target will create a mandate. We have to look at the needs of the grid and consider what is required to balance the grid. We need to learn from Australia's development and implement it according to the specific situation in India. We should consider any storage design requirements, safety parameters and decommissioning of energy projects.”
Khandelwal said it was necessary to continue the momentum and increase the number of tenders for hybrid deployment projects. “We should support multiple energy storage technologies and look at energy storage in a multi-dimensional way,” he said. “Regulatory policies in India should be consistent. Seasonal energy storage is also a technology that can help provide 24/7 power. Wind power projects that operate during monsoons are critical. Energy storage can help provide power at other times of the year.”
Highlighting that India is a cost-conscious market, Khandelwal said that combining energy storage technology with other technologies rather than deploying energy storage projects independently is the way to go. He pointed out that since electricity is a parallel discipline, it should run and work together to achieve energy goals. "We should combine the energy storage system with various renewable energy sources, which will help the dispatching of the energy storage system," he said.
Koul emphasized the importance of developing ancillary markets. India currently does not have any ancillary services mechanism to develop ancillary markets in India. Energy storage systems will play an important role in the energy transition of many companies and sectors.
As global demand grows, battery energy storage companies have seen huge inflows. According to the Mercom Capital Group’s Q1 and Q2 2022 Energy Storage, Grid and Efficiency Financing and M&A Report, in Q1 2022, financing for global battery energy storage developers increased by 64% to 57% $15.8 billion was raised in one deal, while $9.6 billion was raised in 43 deals in the first quarter of 2021.