At "The One Earth" summit, the world bank group announced a commitment of $1 billion for a new global initiative to accelerate investment in battery energy storage systems in developing and middle-income countries. The plan is expected to help these countries increase their use of renewable energy, especially wind and solar, to improve energy security,grid stability and expand electricity supply.
"This could be a game changer for developing countries," said Jim Yong Kim, President of the world bank group. "Battery storage can help countries move to next-generation power generation technologies,expand energy supplies, and lay the foundation for cleaner,more stable energy systems."
Currently, batteries used in power generation systems are expensive and most projects are concentrated in developed countries. The accelerated battery energy for development program will provide funding and risk reduction for investment projects, such as utility-scale solar parks with battery storage capacity,off-grid systems(including micro-grids), and independent batteries to help stabilize and strengthen the grid,depending on the needs of each country. This plan will also support large-scale demonstration projects of new energy storage technologies that meet the needs of developing countries,such as batteries that are durable, adaptable to harsh environments and high temperatures,and with minimal environmental risk.
The world bank group has been working with countries for years to support the development of energy storage batteries alongside solar and wind power, and is currently working on projects in Africa, South Asia and the Pacific. The world bank group has funded about 15% of fixed battery storage capacity deployed or under development in developing countries,primarily through micro-grid projects and to improve resilience in island countries.