WBG's $1bn for battery storage to boost renewable energy

WBG’s $1bn for battery storage to boost renewable energy

0

Historic low prices for solar and wind energy, and countries want to use as much of it as possible to meet their energy needs.
A new, first-of-its-kind $1 billion World Bank Group program aims to help fast-track investments in battery storage, so it can be deployed affordably and at scale in middle-income and developing countries, including some of the fastest growing economies in the world. Battery storage allows for wind and solar energy to be used at a much greater scale by making it possible to store electricity and use it when it is needed most.
The program, which is expected to mobilize another $4 billion, will help countries leapfrog to a new era of energy technology and improve their energy security and grid stability while bolstering global efforts to transition to clean energy.
Dhaka, Oct 01 – In a major announcement at the One Planet Summit in New York last week, the World Bank Group committed $1 billion for a new global program to accelerate investments in battery storage for energy systems in developing and middle-income countries. The program is expected to help these countries ramp up their use of renewable – particularly wind and solar power – improve energy security, increase grid stability and expand access to electricity.
The $1 billion in World Bank Group financing is expected to mobilize another $4 billion in concessional climate financing and public and private investments. The program aims to finance 17.5-gigawatt hours (GWh) of battery storage by 2025 – more than triple the 4-5 GWh currently installed in all developing countries.
“For developing countries, this can be a game changer,” said World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim. “Battery storage can help countries leapfrog to the next generation of power generation technology, expand energy access, and set the stage for much cleaner, more stable, energy systems.”
The global energy landscape is undergoing a major transformation. Attractive costs for solar and wind and emerging innovations like floating solar and solar rooftops are making clean energy a compelling proposition in many countries and improving the prospects for global efforts to fight climate change.
Renewable energy sources, including solar and wind, accounted for almost two-thirds of net new power capacity around the world in 2016, with almost 165 gigawatts (GW) of power coming online in 2016. Renewable electricity capacity is also forecast to expand by over 920 GW between 2017 and 2022.
While solar and wind energy are starting to see more and more uptake, there is no widespread solution in place to store the electricity they produce and use it when it is needed most. Energy storage – batteries in particular — can help solve that problem.
But battery technology is expensive and not yet widely deployed in large-scale projects. The gap is particularly acute in developing countries, where wind and solar power have great potential, energy demand is growing, and where large populations often live without reliable, affordable electricity.
A new World Bank Group (WBG) program aims to close that gap.
“Accelerating Battery Storage for Development” is a new, first-of-its-kind global program to accelerate the deployment of battery storage for energy systems in developing and middle-income countries. It is expected to help countries ramp up their use of renewable energy, increase grid stability and help them leapfrog to a new generation of energy technology.
The WBG is committing $1 billion in financing for the program, which was announced by WBG President Jim Yong Kim at the One Planet Summit in New York. It also aims to fundraise $1 billion in concessional climate funds, through channels such as the Climate Investment Funds’ Clean Technology Fund (CTF), and mobilize at least another $3 billion from the public and private sectors. The goal is to finance 17.5-gigawatt hours (GWh) of battery storage by 2025 – more than triple the 4-5 GWh currently installed in all developing countries.
“We are seeing historic low prices for solar and wind energy, and countries want to use as much of it as possible to meet their energy needs. But to make full use of solar and wind power, we need at-scale and affordable battery storage. Our goal is to catalyze new markets that will help drive down costs and make batteries a viable storage solution for developing countries.” –
Riccardo Puliti, Senior Director and Head of Energy and Extractives at the World Bank
The World Bank is already taking steps to address this challenge – having financed over 15% of the grid-related battery storage in various stages of deployment in developing countries to date. This includes a combined solar energy and battery storage project in Haiti and an emergency solar and battery storage power plant in the Gambia and many mini-grids across the globe.
It has also been working with other countries to support the deployment of batteries with solar and wind power in recent years, with projects currently under preparation in Africa, South Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean and the Pacific.
Through the newly announced battery storage program, the WBG will provide investment support for renewable energy projects – such as hybrid solar parks and mini-grids – to buy down the cost and risk of battery storage components.
The program will help shape policies needed to integrate battery storage and establish procurement practices in favour of environmentally friendly technologies and recycling programs.
It will also convene a global think tank on battery storage, bringing together national laboratories, research institutions, development agencies and philanthropies to foster international technological cooperation and training to develop and adopt new storage solutions that are tailored to the needs and conditions of developing countries.
Currently, batteries used in energy generation systems are expensive, and most projects are concentrated in developed countries. The “Accelerating Battery Storage for Development” program, in response to demand from countries, will finance and de-risk investments such as utility-scale solar parks with battery storage, off-grid systems – including mini-grids – and stand-alone batteries that can help stabilize and strengthen grids.
The program will also support large-scale demonstration projects for new storage technologies suitable for developing countries’ needs – such as batteries that are long-lasting, resilient to harsh conditions and high temperatures, and that present minimal environmental risks.
“Batteries are critical to decarbonizing the world’s power systems. They allow us to store wind and solar energy and deploy it when it’s needed most to provide people with clean, affordable, round-the-clock power.” Dr Kim said. “We call on our partners to join us and match the investments we’re making today. We can create new markets for battery storage in countries with high wind and solar potential, growing energy demand, and populations that still live without reliable electricity.”
The World Bank Group is putting $1 billion of its own funds towards this new program and will fundraise another $1 billion in concessional climate funds through channels such as the Climate Investment Funds’ Clean Technology Fund (CTF). The program is expected to raise an additional $3 billion from the public and private funds and investors.
The new program will also convene a global think tank on battery storage, bringing together national laboratories, research institutions, development agencies and philanthropies to foster international technological cooperation and training that can develop and adopt new storage solutions tailored for the needs and conditions of developing countries.
The World Bank Group has been working with countries to support the deployment of batteries together with solar and wind power for several years, with projects currently underway in Africa, South Asia, and the Pacific. The Bank Group has financed roughly 15 percent of the stationary battery storage capacity already deployed or currently under development in developing countries, mostly through mini-grid projects and in island states to improve resilience.
GreenWatch News Desk with World Bank Group

Share.
Loading...

Comments are closed.