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by Julian Spector
February 28, 2019

Editor's note: This article completes the Storage Plus series profiling the most exciting energy storage markets in the world. You can find the previous coverage here.

No global storage journey could be complete without a stop at the birthplace of modern grid storage, the United States.

This market kicked things off a decade ago with a regional opening for batteries to deliver fast frequency regulation. Since then, ambitions and opportunities have grown. Several states have committed to decarbonizing their electricity sector, singling out energy storage as a necessary tool for delivering that goal. Solar developers are finding economic cases where slapping batteries on their plants makes the whole thing more valuable. Electric vehicle adoption could soon swamp all the battery capacity installed for stationary grid use.

Many of our readers will be familiar with the broad strokes of these developments. Different insights emerge, however, when viewing a familiar subject with fresh eyes.

My series of foreign market examinations provided a new analytical framework, explaining the rise of storage with variables like geographical constraints, market design and political milieu. In contrast, we have covered the U.S. market piecemeal, as trends and projects arise.

Stepping back to the national level, it's clear that the U.S. has built the most diverse mosaic of a national market, inventing and testing more uses for storage technology than any of the other nations. That decentralization enhances innovation while hindering the rapid adoption of policies and market structures across state lines.