Can storage help reduce the cost of a future UK electricity system?
The United Kingdom’s (UK) electricity system is undergoing significant changes to provide electricity that is secure, affordable and ultimately low carbon. Energy storage, alongside other flexibility options such as demand response and interconnectors, can provide the flexibility required by a future system that may see an increasing share of intermittent renewables and more distributed generation.
This report assesses the benefits of flexibility solutions for a future UK electricity system using the example of energy storage. It examines potential scenarios the UK could face and the impact storage might have in terms of cost to bill payers across these scenarios. Understanding the optimal role for storage in a future electricity system requires advanced energy system modelling: the uncertainty around the costs of storage technologies, the costs of different sources of power generation and network infrastructure, future policy, and the nature of the future energy system itself creates a complex picture.
Given the complexity of the electricity system, this analysis focuses on storage for power applications only and does not consider additional opportunities for storage in heat applications.