US Energy Storage Deployments Increase 200% Year-Over-Year

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US energy storage deployments for the first time saw home energy storage beating out front-of-meter storage figures in the second quarter according to Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables’ most recent US Energy Storage Monitor.

Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables (formerly known as GTM Research) this week published its most recent US Energy Storage Monitor in collaboration with the Energy Storage Association, revealing that 156.5 megawatt-hours (MWh) of energy storage were deployed in the second quarter of 2018, 24% over the MWh installed in the first quarter of 2018 but a phenomenal 200% over that which was deployed a year earlier (though it’s worth noting that Q2’17 was particularly low).

In terms of MW installed, the second quarter saw 61.8 MW installed compared to 43.6 MW installed in the first quarter of 2018 and up 60% year-over-year.

The top energy storage markets across the United States depend on the sector in question, with California leading the residential and non-residential sectors, but Arizona driving front-of-meter deployments.

Residential deployments for the quarter were concentrated in California and Hawaii, which together accounted for 72% of all MWh deployed in the quarter. Brett Simon, a Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables senior analyst, believes that there are no signs that either state will yield their grasp on the top two spots for residential solar installation — though there is a race for the number three spot, with both Massachusetts and Arizona making ground.

EDF grid scale battery storage“So far in 2018, 24 states and the District of Columbia have taken some form of regulatory or legislative policy action with respect to energy storage, with even more states poised to do so in 2019,” said Kelly Speakes-Backman, CEO of the Energy Storage Association. “The industry is bullish about continued state action designed to ensure fair and equal access for storage to the grid and markets, to enable competition in all grid planning and procurements, and to capture the full value of energy storage.  As these barriers to storage are removed in state markets, we will likely see new state names on the leaderboards for residential, non-residential, and front-of-the-meter deployments.”

The report goes on to highlight that customers are becoming increasingly interested in self-consumption and resilience, which is helping to drive the residential sector. However, Wood Mackenzie doesn’t currently believe that the residential sector will continue to see such impressive growth across the near-term.

“Over the last few months, we’ve heard consistently from residential installers and distributors that they’re unable to receive residential storage systems in the quantities ordered,” explained Wood Mackenzie’s Brett Simon. “This outcome is heavily influenced by lithium-ion battery supply constraints, which affects all three market segments. As a result, while the second half of each year usually sees growth over the first, in contrast we expect the US residential storage market in the second half of the year to be comparable in size to the first half.”

The non-residential and front-of-meter segments may not have seen quite such explosive growth, but they both grew on an annual basis when measured in terms of megawatt-hours. The non-residential segment experienced its second-best quarter ever with 48 MWh deployed, while the front-of-meter segment saw 51 MWh installed through the second quarter.

Looking forward, Wood Mackenzie and the Energy Storage Association predict that energy storage deployments across the United States are expected to accelerate dramatically over the next few years, growing from 393 MW in 2017 to almost 1 gigawatt (GW) in 2019, and will stretch to nearly 4 GW by 2023.

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Joshua S Hill

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