Energy storage has experienced rapid growth in recent years, and it has emerged as an essential technology in the transformation to renewables.
That growth is likely to continue. According to a report, the U.S. energy storage market had one of its best three months of growth in the second quarter of 2021. The report projects more build out of storage capacity in the months and years ahead.
In conjunction with the U.S. Energy Storage Association, market research firm Wood Mackenzie released its quarterly "U.S. Energy Storage Monitor" in September. The report tracks growth in the industry for April, May and June 2021.
The Monitor notes that the U.S. energy storage market deployed 345 megawatts (MW) and 1,013 megawatt hours (MWh) in the quarter. Both numbers are near record-breaking. The 345 MW represents the third-largest on record, and 1,013 MWh deployment is the second-largest. The numbers are also a sharp increase from just one year ago. The deployment of megawatts is 162% greater than what was deployed in the same quarter of 2020.
Breaking down the numbers geographically, the report finds that California is the only state to make the top three in all three segments measured. With 584.5 MWh of storage installed overall for the quarter, the Golden State ranked first in the nation in residential and front-of-the-meter (FTM) and second in nonresidential installations.
Of the three segments, FTM deployment is projected to make up the bulk of the overall market at 89% for this year. That growth is being driven by massive investment from utilities and developers taking advantage of wholesale market opportunities and incentives.
This year’s growth is projected to rapidly accelerate and fueled by investments. The report sees U.S. energy storage as a $8.9 billion annual market in 2026, with a cumulative investment of $45 billion over the next six years. That money will fuel a ninefold increase, from the 3,751 MWh deployed last year to 34,784 MWh in 2026.