batteries lot
Photo by mohamed abdelghaffar on

Some recent news that shows how incredibly expensive it is to store electricity using batteries on a grid-scale basis:

Battery maker Invinity Energy Systems has been awarded £11 million ($13.7 million) by the British government to build the UK’s largest-ever grid-scale battery storage.

The grid-scale battery storage project will feature Invinity’s Vanadium Flow Battery technology, which provides long-duration, nondegrading energy storage and is ideal for the management of renewable energy systems. Invinity asserts that its battery technology will last for more than 25 years and is almost completely recyclable.

The 30 MWh system power battery system will be capable of delivering more than 7 MW of power on demand and able to store enough energy to power 2,500 homes for over two hours.

The UK is about to build its largest-ever grid-scale battery

There are roughly 35,000 homes on the Isle of Man, so using the same power usage, this implies that the battery would be able to store enough energy to power these 35,000 homes for over eight-and-a-half minutes.

The obvious lesson is that electricity is the world’s most time-sensitive product, and it is incredibly difficult to move electricity from one time to another. This means that current endeavours to increase intermittent renewable effectively require the construction of gas-fired electricity generators which can adjust quickly to variable supply (and variable demand).

Beyond gas? We obviously require a diversification of electricity supply from elsewhere in the UK.

Michael Josem is a long-term consumer advocate, most prominently as a global leader in combating fraud in the online gambling industry. He was in part the inspiration for the 20th Century Fox Movie, Runner Runner, starring Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake.

Josem has over a decade of experience as a senior business leader working across various high-tech and online industries, and takes action to build a better community. His primary volunteer roles include service for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, and Graih, the homelessness charity.