Energy & Environment

Energy Dept. seeks to cut cost of energy storage, boost renewables

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm is seen during a Senate Appropriations hearing on June 15
UPI Photo

The Energy Department will attempt to decrease the cost of energy storage technology by 90 percent within a decade in an attempt to boost clean energy use.

The department officially announced its “Earthshot” goal on Wednesday, saying in a statement that it’s seeking to accelerate breakthroughs in clean electricity storage. 

“We’re going to bring hundreds of gigawatts of clean energy onto the grid over the next few years, and we need to be able to use that energy wherever and whenever it’s needed,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a statement. 

“That’s why DOE is working aggressively toward cheaper, longer duration energy storage to reach President Biden’s goal of 100% clean electricity by 2035,” she added. 

Energy storage is particularly important in renewable energy use, because it can enable the use of wind and solar energy when the sun isn’t shining and the wind isn’t blowing. 

An Energy Department official told reporters in a background call on Tuesday that the department specifically wants to create funding opportunities, leverage its national labs and enhance research and development capabilities in an effort to bring down the cost from the 2020 level of about $160 to $170 per kilowatt hour. 

The price reduction goal is aimed at encouraging utilities and power generators to use an increasing amount of storage technology, officials said. 

The Biden administration has backed a clean electricity standard, which would require the electric sector to only use power from clean sources by 2035. If this is carried out, it may require increased use of renewables, as well as other clean energy sources like nuclear. 

The energy storage goal is the second “Earthshot” goal that has been announced by the department, which previously said it wanted to try to reduce the cost of clean hydrogen energy by 80 percent. 

Tags Jennifer Granholm Joe Biden
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