Energy storage refers to capturing and storing already produced energy. Storing renewable energy effectively and cheaply is essential for sustainable development. Today, most storage possibilities are too expensive and need to be more effective. Although, many initiatives focus on improving the storage of renewable energy. To make it accessible to the public. This primarily concerns solar and wind power. As hydropower already stores energy efficiently.
Global energy storage
Globally, there is a great need for the ability to store green energy efficiently and cost-effectively. Specifically when concerning the transition from fossil fuels to clean energy. So far, the batteries or other techniques that allow this kind of storage are too expensive and ineffective. Therefore, a cost-effective storage solution could be revolutionary for sustainable development.
Solar & wind energy storage
As mentioned, the need for innovative solutions mainly concerns solar and wind energy. When it comes to solar, the issue is the most relevant in northern countries due to the long and dark winters. There, the summer months allow for a production of a very high amount of solar energy. In contrast, the winters have significantly lower production. This fact requires a system that stores the energy from the summer for the winter. Or, more simply put, storing the excess energy for the future. Today, the energy from solar cells gets stored with the help of solar cell batteries. However, this is a relatively new and expensive product – particularly for private households.
Batteries also get used to store the power from the wind. Similar to the issue of solar batteries, these are very expensive. Another relevant aspect is that batteries often involve unsustainable mining of various minerals. Therefore, researchers are currently working to invent new types of batteries and searching for other, more sustainable options.
Another option for energy storage is hydrogen. Hydrogen has the best potential among all the technologies that aim to find a way to store energy from one season to another. Both solar and wind energy can get converted into hydrogen and stored for later use.
On a global scale, these kinds of storage facilities already exist. It will most likely be significantly common in the future. The EU and nations like Sweden are considering hydrogen as a solution. Furthermore, there is also the ability to use hydrogen in cars, creating hydrogen-powered vehicles.
Regarding hydropower, energy storage is already a part of the technique. Large-scale energy storage happens through the dams placed before the power plants. There, water is collected and used when needed. In other words, the water flow is controlled and adapted to electricity production.
In conclusion, there is a great deal of interest in the potential of energy storage today. This interest is notable in the increased investments in renewable energy. By searching for “sustainable shares”, one can find many companies focused on energy storage. Therefore, it is safe to say that these techniques are part of a sustainable future.