The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris set the framework for a rapid global shift to a
sustainable energy system in order to avoid the risk of catastrophic climate change. The challenge for governments
has shifted from discussing what might be achieved to determining how to meet collective goals for a sustainable
energy system. Given the sharp and often rapid decline of renewable power generation technologies costs in recent years, the electricity sector has made concrete progress on decarbonisation (IRENA, 2017). Energy storage has been a key component to enabling the grand transition and continues to gain momentum globally (World Energy Council, 2016).
The transformation of power networks, pushed by the electrification of energy systems, requires additional energy storage capacity to address new flexibility needs of electric grids.
As energy systems transition to rely more on renewables and less on fossil fuels, we will also need to increase the capacity of energy storage. This is because most renewable energy resources provide an intermittent supply which
can be at odds with demand. As a result, renewable installations paired with energy storage are expected to
continue to well into the future.
For renewable integration and energy storage to succeed, energy markets need to shift their strategies. The
flexibility that storage provides to energy networks and service providers will drastically change the ways in which
energy is provided in the future. For example, customers will become less reliant on stable and secure electricity
supply if they are able to store backup energy in their homes. As energy generation and storage solutions become
more easily accessible to customers, so will the opportunities to participate and shape the wider energy system. To
meet global decarbonisation targets, energy storage needs to be included as part of the wider energy system.