Broad Motivation for BESS Use
The Need for Flexibility
The strengthening political will to fight climate change, coupled with the declining cost of renewables, has made it increasingly likely that the global energy system will be completely decarbonised over the next few decades. Whilst this is undoubtably great for the planet, this transformation comes with its challenges. Chief amongst these is a loss of electricity system flexibility that goes hand-in- hand with this transformation. This mainly means the loss of an ability to adjust electricity supply so that it matches demand in real-time - which it must - and so that the physical infrastructure that transports the electricity - the wires, substations, etc. - is not overwhelmed. Adjusting demand to supply can also help with this task but to a lesser extent. A loss of flexibility makes it harder to keep the electricity system stable and operating, and to do so at a reasonable cost, with electricity consumers ultimately paying the price. On the supply side, the current and expected further loss of flexibility stems from the replacement of centralised, thermal generation - coal and nuclear in particular - with decentralised, weather-dependent renewables, mainly wind and solar.