US battery storage heading for 4.5 GW in 2024, after Q1 record

Wood Mackenzie said this week that its forecast for battery storage will reach 4.5 GW by 2024, when the US alone should be a $4.8 billion market. It also said it was monitoring quarter by quarter and that in Q1 2019 there was 148.8 MW of new grid storage, a rise of 232% over this time last year and a record. The results come from its Energy Storage Monitor which tracks storage capacity in the US. In 2019 the overall value of the US battery storage market will reach almost $1 billion.

Coverage in GreenTechMedia, a publication owned by Wood Mack, added some details, talking about New Jersey building out built 50% of the quarter’s storage, and that commercial and industrial storage set a personal best, delivering 44.9 MW in Q1.

Overall energy capacity, measured in megawatt-hours, fell 23% compared to the previous quarter even as megawatts deployed rose. This reflects shorter duration projects coming online during the recent quarter, due to an unusual preponderance of systems geared for fast-response grid services.

Details were also given of a 409 MW procurement by utility Florida Power & Light.

One of the reasons for the huge Q1 2019 upswing is because supply constraints hit in 2H 2018, as a capacity surge in South Korea stole storage intended for the US market and pushed projects back to 2019.

The battery storage sales were geographically dispersed, as opposed to all being in a single market, as they have been in the past with New Jersey (20 MW), New York (20 MW), Arizona (10MW) and Massachusetts all contributing high numbers.

By contrast grid scale batteries in China in 2018 went up by 340 MW, almost doubling capacity in a single year, but its need for electrical storage can be seen in its 30 GW of pumped hydro storage that it already has installed, and that figure is likely to rise even faster than the US numbers and South Korea’s numbers are projected to be just behind the US figures.