Storage is the ‘Holy Grail’ of the Energy Transition – or is it?

By François-Xavier Chevallerau, Biophysical Economics Policy Center

New research raises some crucial questions about the energetic performance of available energy storage options and their ability to support the transition to renewable energy A global energy transition is underway, which is intended to cure the world from its fossil fuel addiction and to bring it on a more sustainable renewable energy path. Solar and wind energy sources, in particular, are growing fast and are forecasted to provide a rising share of the world’s energy supply in the coming decades. Almost 150 years after photovoltaic cells and wind turbines were invented, they still generate only a small fraction of the world’s primary energy, but they are now growing faster than any other energy source and their falling costs are making them increasingly competitive with fossil fuels. Many now predict that an era of clean, unlimited and cheap energy is possible, or even that it is looming. However, the expected transition...