Residential storage works on paper, but lacks channels to market


By Steve Minnihan


Residential energy storage (around 5 kWh) and community energy storage (around 100 kWh) offer  levelized cost of electricity below retail rates and favorable in a small number of large-volume regional markets, including Japan and the United Kingdom.


This leaves many wondering why residential-level energy storage accounts for only 30 MWh of installed capacity on the grid as of December 31, 2011.


The painful truth is that residential and community energy storage are facing the same channel-to-market issues that home energy management systems have encountered. Simply put - the homeowner doesn't understand the product, while the electric utility doesn't see the value.


The first approach is to sell energy storage systems directly to the homeowner through a number of market channels. However, residential customers across the globe have proven ignorant, risk-adverse, and unengaged with cost- and energy-saving technologies.

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