Energy Storage as a Service: The Overview
Energy storage as a service (ESaaS) could very well define the future of battery storage and renewable energy systems. Solar-plus-storage has already grown increasingly popular thanks to further investment in research & development—leading to technological advances and, as a result, falling costs for the end user. With storage as a service, the consumer will not only avail of improved technology and lower costs, but also from a host of other advantages which come as part of the ‘as a service’ model.
From autonomy to dependability, energy storage as a service builds upon the promise of battery storage with innovation and ingenuity. With energy storage dominating solar discussion online, it seems certain that solar-plus-storage will continue to grow within the solar market. This means that innovative approaches, like the storage as a service model, will be more in demand than ever before. Renewables like wind and solar are pivotal in terms of halting climate change, so any innovation capable of enhancing the delivery of renewable energy sources will be highly valued.
Intelligent battery storage isn’t a new concept, but it’s been steadily gaining momentum in recent times and looks set to play a big role in the future of renewables. With this impending growth in mind, we’ve decided to take a look at some of the core advantages of energy storage as a service. From flexibility and autonomy, to stability and adaptability, these are the big reasons why energy storage as a service is the future.
Energy Storage as a Service: The Advantages
Outlined below are some of the key benefits associated with the energy storage as a service model.
#1. Overall Flexibility
Flexibility, with regards to energy storage as a service can mean a lot of different things. The model of storage as a service offers flexibility in terms of usage, time, cost, and more. With this model, users can enter into a service agreement without the purchase of the battery itself. This ensures that energy will always be available—but only used when needed.
#2. Minimal Commitment
The concept of energy storage as a service is befitting of the modern mindset. As noted above, the flexibility of the system is a big draw for many people. In the modern day, things are often in flux and people don’t like to be tied down. With this in mind, a more conventional, permanent battery storage installation could be seen as both too costly and too much of a time commitment for some. With the storage as a service model, the energy user has access to low commitment energy storage with virtually no risk.
#3. Low Risk
As stated above, energy storage as a service offers a modern alternative to the issue of a long-term battery storage commitment. By removing this commitment, the model also alleviates basically all of the risk. There’s no permanent purchase and no lengthy investment, so the user will not find themselves tied to factors like system value, regulatory guidelines, and market conditions. A contract with a single energy supplier for the storage as a service system simplifies the process too, with a dependable supplier overseeing all the aforementioned variables and more.
#4. Grid Autonomy
The storage as a service model offers a certain level of energy independence. This can be a big draw for certain energy users, particularly in areas where the grid has been known to falter. With utility companies and energy providers across the country looking to innovate and develop the energy grid to meet the demands of modern life, users of energy storage as a service are a step ahead of the game. In the event of blackouts, power outages, and natural disasters, the energy independence offered by the system can be a revelation.
#5. Energy Stability
This benefit is somewhat related to autonomy, noted above, as the overall power grid is a factor once more. Energy storage as a service ensures a reliable, consistent source of energy. For those who live in more isolated areas, this can be a real lifesaver. Indeed, for those homes located in remote areas, this idea of energy stability may be the biggest benefit of all. It’s likely that the promise of stability is what attracts many users to energy storage as a service in the first place.
#6. Agreement Adaptability
User/supplier agreements for the provision of energy storage as a service are—like the supply model itself—quite adaptable and adjustable to fit the needs of the end user. From just a few months right up to a number of years, the length of the agreement differs from contract to contract. This ensures that the user can plan for their future without worrying about what to do with their system should they decide to move house or make other life changes. In addition, an agreement for the supply of energy storage as a service offers all the cost-saving opportunity of a permanent battery purchase without any of the long-term asset investment. The cost of implementing the system alongside your existing energy source is generally quite reasonable, and your supplier should offer a guarantee of system reliability on top of everything else.
Energy Storage as a Service: The Future
With the growth of the ‘as a service’ model throughout countless sectors in the United States and across the world, it’s no surprise that renewable energy and battery storage industries have sought to implement energy storage as a service. Given the increased demand for renewables from individuals, communities, businesses, and basically anyone that uses electricity, it looks likely that more and more energy suppliers will seek to develop the storage as a service model moving forward. From the advantages outlined above, it’s easy to see why demand is increasing for this kind of service, and why suppliers, utilities, and customers across the United States are getting very excited about energy storage as a service in 2019.
By Shane Croghan