The global battery storage market is flourishing and cumulative installations are expected to reach 942 GW by 2040, excluding pumped storage hydropower, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).
BNEF's head of energy storage, Logan Goldie-Scot, added: "We see energy storage growing to a point where it is equivalent to 7% of the total installed power capacity globally in 2040". Energy storage will become a practical alternative to new-build generation or network reinforcement.
"This is partly due to faster-than-expected falls in storage system costs, and partly to a greater focus on two emerging applications for the technology - electric vehicle charging, and energy access in remote regions".
The report suggests behind-the-meter installations will increasingly be sited at business and industrial premises and at millions of residential properties to help balance grid demand, cut costs, store excess output and improve reliability. BNEF has named China and the USA as the nations set to increase their storage capacity the most, with India, Japan, Germany, France, Australia, South Korea and the United Kingdom completing the top nine. For now, South Korea takes top spot but will be overtaken by the USA in the early 2020s, only to be surpassed by China from that decade onwards.
Those interested in the use of aggregated behind-the-meter energy storage in the place of utility-scale applications will have to wait for years before regulatory frameworks in some countries fully allow it, said BNEF. "China will then lead throughout to 2040", BloombergNEF says.
Developing countries, particularly in Africa, are also forecast to see rapid growth in battery storage - again, boosted by an increase in the amount of off-grid and edge-of-grid applications. Behind-the-meter storage will also increasingly be used to provide system services on top of customer applications.
Other key findings include a prediction that storage will account for 7% of the total installed power capacity globally in 2040. It will be dwarfed by the electrical vehicle market, which will more materially impact the supply-demand balance and prices for metals such as lithium and cobalt.