DNV GL has issued its annual Energy Transition Outlook. It reports that global electricity demand is set to grow by a factor of 2.5. Over half of this demand is expected to be met with renewable energy by 2050, while storage will play a key role. It adds that grid infrastructure expenditures are less related to variable renewable energy assets than to increasing energy demand. In the current scenario, meanwhile, global warming is likely to reach 2.6°C.
The historic French brand says it will focus on rail, telecom and infrastructure, but environmentalists hoping the move finally heralds a breakthrough for electric vehicles in one of the world’s biggest transport markets appear set to be disappointed.
Following hot on the heels of Exide Industries, lead acid battery maker, Indian-based Amara Raja Batteries Limited has said it will set up a 100 MWh lithium ion assembly plant in Andhra Pradesh. The company aims to establish a foothold in the energy storage market for electric vehicles.
With a rapid reduction in costs, solar plus storage can be an effective alternative for customers buying peak power from the grid. At the same time, utilities can avoid investments in peak capacity or eliminate load shedding by utilizing these resources.
India’s energy storage industry feels the government’s move to reduce GST on lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries from 28% to 18% will benefit electric vehicles and the renewables sector. The government has also cut GST on the raw materials for battery manufacturing, to jump-start domestic industry.
While Africa has emerged as a dynamic, fast-moving hub, Asia leads in capacity deployment with its total capacity more than tripling to nearly 4.3 GW in 2017 from 1.3 GW in 2008, finds IRENA. Particularly, in India, a strong policy has pushed deployment of off-grid solar for agriculture and public end-uses.
Dr Rashi Gupta, Director at Vision Mechatronics discusses the EV landscape in India, particularly focusing on the potential for battery manufacturing. While there are currently many challenges, like a lack of raw materials and infrastructure, the opportunities are immense.
Solar PV capacity is set to grow 17-fold, and wind six-fold, by 2050, to account for nearly half of global electricity generation, predicts BNEF, while investments will reach US$11.5 trillion. Cost reductions will drive this charge, particularly in the battery market, which will benefit from the EV manufacturing ramp up. Despite this, the electricity sector is still failing to bring CO₂ emissions down to the required levels, with its continued dependence on gas.
India’s PV sector is expanding at a serious pace, creating jobs and further securing energy supply for many businesses. Yet, sourcing battery cell technology at the current rate resulted in annual foreign exchange of Rs. 1012 crore creating deficits, that hopefully can be averted in the future.
For off-grid solar PV installations, the high cost of batteries is the biggest bottleneck. However, the cost of storage is expected to drop as technology advances and volumes go up.
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