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REA calls for UK storage market mechanism

REA report concludes new market mechanism needed to unlock investment in a range of longer-duration energy storage technologies in UK

The report ‘Longer-Duration Energy Storage: The missing piece to a Net Zero, reliable and low-cost energy future’ estimates that the UK will need at least 30GW of longer-duration energy storage by 2050. However, the report concludes that this target is currently undeliverable based on the present market and regulatory framework.

Frank Gordon, REA director of policy, said: “Longer-duration energy storage will be vital to supporting our grid through the energy transition in the drive to net zero.

“However, as our report shows, we are a long way from meeting our targets on current trends.

“While I welcome the government’s announcement of a £68m demonstration competition for first of a kind energy storage projects, this will not resolve the barriers to deployment that affect all longer-duration energy storage technologies.

“It’s clear that, in order to drive investment in this area, a new market mechanism is needed.

“We see an income floor as the most appropriate option, however with a Regulated Asset Base model being the next best alternative.

“We will work with BEIS to push for change in this area and hope they respond by issuing a Call for Evidence alongside the Smart Systems & Flexibility Plan update.”

Drax Group CEO, Will Gardiner, added: “Britain’s pumped hydro storage stations have never been more important to the country’s decarbonisation.

“They play a vital role in keeping the grid stable and enabling more wind power to come online.

“Flexible and responsive power generation and storage capacity from pumped hydro projects like Cruachan are essential for delivering the UK Government’s net zero by 2050 target.

“With the right support framework from Government a new generation of pumped hydro storage power stations can be built, supporting new jobs and helping the country decarbonise faster.”