WB Announces Energy Partnership to Support Energy Storage in Developing Countries

The 10th Clean Energy Ministerial and 4th Mission Innovation Ministerial, being held at Vancouver, Canada, saw the announcement of a new international partnership by the World Bank. The Energy Storage Partnership (ESP) includes the World Bank Group and 29 organizations working together to help develop energy storage solutions tailored to the needs of developing countries.

The partnership recognises the critical role of storage as solar, wind and solar+wind hybrid systems spread all over the world, particularly in developing countries that have traditionally been heavily fossil fuel reliant. Breakthroughs in energy storage are probably the most critical aspect of shifting these countries to a path to decarbonising their economies faster.

With the current battery market driven by the electric vehicle industry,  most mainstream technologies cannot provide long duration storage or withstand harsh climatic conditions and low operation and maintenance capacity. That misses the demands of the grid in developing countries.

Thus, the World Bank group convened Energy Storage Partnership (ESP) will seek to foster international cooperation on:

  • Technology Research Development & Demonstration, Applications
  • System Integration and Planning Tools
  • Policies, Regulations and Procurement
  • Enabling Systems for Management and Sustainability

“The fast growth we’re seeing in the electric vehicle market is exactly what we need for energy storage in power systems around the world. We want to see batteries connected to the grid, serving mini-grids, and enabling much more use of renewable power from the sun and wind,” said Riccardo Puliti, Senior Director for Energy and Extractives, World Bank. “This is why we are convening the Energy Storage Partnership and we are honored to work with the partners who have joined this initiative. We’re looking forward to having more partners join the effort.”

Mission Innovation was born out of a global commitment to accelerate clean energy innovation, to make clean energy widely affordable and accessible. We recognize that this cannot be done by Mission Innovation alone and that we need strong partnerships with organizations like the World Bank to be successful,” said Frank Des Rosiers, Chair of the Mission Innovation Steering Committee. “This Energy Storage Partnership with the World Bank aligns with a key innovation opportunity that Mission Innovation members have identified through our Smart Grid Innovation Challenge.”

Power systems are undergoing rapid change. Policy makers and regulators need to actively identify options to increase the flexibility of power systems in their jurisdictions; this not least to accommodate the integration of increasingly larger shares of intermittent renewable generation and distributed energy resources,” said Christian Zinglersen, Head of Secretariat, Clean Energy Ministerial. “This is the focus of several areas of CEM work where storage is an area of increasing interest amongst CEM governments and other partners. Policy and regulatory design will remain key in order for storage-based solutions to contribute cost efficiently to the needs of a changing power mix. Hence, partnerships such as this targeting real-world, deployable solutions are very valuable.”

The ESP will be hosted at the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) and will be developed and implemented in partnership with other organizations. The ESP will complement the WBG’s  $1 billion battery storage investment program announced in September 2018 to support battery storage projects and raise an additional $1 billion in concessional finance.

Prasanna Singh

Prasanna Singh

Prasanna has beena media professional for over 20 years. He is the Group Editor of Saur energy International

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