Energy storage is a critical link in the global shift toward a cleaner, more sustainable energy economy. Without storage, renewable sources of energy are intermittent and unreliable, but so too is the grid in blackout and emergency scenarios, in which the centralized generation and distribution of power breaks down. Access to renewable energy that is reliable, distributed, and uninterrupted when combined with storage, both on and off-grid, creates the opportunity and connection between economic prosperity, social equity and environmental sustainability.
Renewable generation, coupled with storage, stands to eliminate the human and environmental damage and costs associated with oil and gas extraction and generation and allows governments globally to forgo the US$5.3 trillion in fossil subsidies, redirecting precious dollars toward other essential government and private enterprise. Distributed renewable generation offers the promise of drastically reducing greenhouse gases, serving the interests of the utility, as well as the customer on the other side of the meter, and reaching remote populations that live beyond the grid. Globally, an estimated 1.2 billion do not have access to power, 1.4 have intermittent access and 1.3 live in the dark, trapping billions of people in poverty and disconnecting them from education, medical care and the digital economy.
Access to renewable energy specifically creates opportunities that have a profound impact on people and communities, from the developed to the undeveloped. Distributed renewable generation and storage emancipates otherwise marginalized communities from the high costs of imported fossil fuel to run generators and heating devices, thereby freeing up funds to invest in other assets, such as education and medical services. The combination of renewable energy and storage puts power back into the hands of people. They own their power, on their terms, anytime, anywhere.