What I Learned This Week

China could dominate the next phase of disruption in the $6 trillion energy sector—creating new winners and challenging U.S. leadership.

In WILTW June 1, 2017, we argued that the deployment of 100 megawatt-hours of grid battery storage in Southern Australia represented a major inflection point for the technology. Prior to Australia’s deployment of battery storage, no utility or government would have considered intermittent renewables for a shortage of baseload generation capacity. Traditionally, the utility would have run a high-capacity transmission line to a distant coal plant or invested in a fossil-fuel-based solution. Improving battery efficiency is now converging with the plummeting cost of intermittent renewables. Lithium-ion battery costs have dropped by a factor of five since 2010 and are presently about $200 per k…

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