I'm so glad you asked! :)
This week's guest on Go Green Radio can answer that question for you.
According to our guest, Jason Makansi, Executive Director of the Energy Storage Council (www.energystoragecouncil.org), “The reason storage is so essential to renewables is the renewables are intermittent -- the sun doesn't always shine and the wind doesn't always blow, and they are often located in areas far from population centers. Because the price of wholesale electricity varies throughout the day, when electricity is sold is just as important as how much electricity is sold. But if you can store the energy generated on a sunny or windy day and then inject that energy into the grid at periods of high demand ... well, then you've got yourself a market. You've got both physical and economic control over your resource and the leverage with which to build increasing demand for your product.
So coupling bulk energy storage with renewable energy -- especially remotely located wind farms -- creates a more reliable market for the energy generated and a more attractive environment for investment. Perhaps most importantly, storage also begins to make renewably generated electricity behave, from a market and supply perspective, like electricity from baseload plants such as nuclear.
Before we expect too much from renewables and are disappointed by their failure to perform, we need to start talking about giving them the power they need to succeed. We need to be talking about storage.”
Go Green Radio airs at 9 a.m. Pacific on Friday, June 4, on www.VoiceAmerica.com. If you miss the live broadcast, you can check out the archive at: http://tinyurl.com/yzhyjdc.