Wednesday, November 18, 2015

"Batteries start to compete for power grid"

We just happen to have a copy of Lazard's report so there you go, serendipity.
And watching major lithium producer Sociedad Química y Minera report and tank 4% got me thinking about Chile and Bolivia.
Still a ways away.

From the Financial Times:
The cost of batteries is falling to the point that they are becoming an increasingly viable option for uses such as supporting the stability of power grids, according to Lazard, the investment bank.

Electricity storage has until recently been prohibitively expensive, but its emergence at an economically viable cost will enable increased use of wind and solar power, which are not always available.

The cost of renewable energy has fallen sharply over the past decade as market growth, usually encouraged by subsidies, has enabled manufacturers of wind turbines and solar panels to benefit from economies of scale.

Similar trends are now at work in electricity storage with investments such as Tesla’s battery “gigafactory”, now under construction in Nevada, greatly increasing manufacturing capacity.

Within five years, Lazard believes, the price of batteries is likely to have fallen to the point that they will be competitive against back-up fossil fuel power generation for a wide range of uses.
“Storage is looking far more optimistic in terms of innovation and material impact now,” said George Bilicic, global leader of Lazard’s power, energy and infrastructure practice.

“Power grid applications were grade school science projects a few years ago. They are much more real now.”

The need for electricity storage has grown along with the use of renewable energy. Onshore wind and solar power in sunny areas are now competitive with conventional coal and gas-fired electricity generation even without subsidies, according to Lazard.

However, because their output is not consistent through the day, and cannot be called on whenever needed, they have to be supported by other power sources. These are typically gas-fired “peaker” plants, which cost more to run than the most efficient generation and are used only when demand is highest....MORE
Here is the report: "Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Storage Analysis"