BATTERY TECHNOLOGY is going to create a new ‘energy revolution’ in the UK over the next decade, as farmers and landowners with renewable energy assets maximise their benefit by storing power for when it is most need and most valuable.

According to the Renewable Energy Association's James Court, around 2.5GW of subsidy-free solar and energy storage projects are set to be deployed in the UK over the next two years. Historically, one of the drawbacks of renewable energy such as solar and wind has been its production variability – battery technology could help to overcome those peaks and troughs.

“If a farmer has already invested in renewable technologies, energy storage would add extra value to their onsite generation,” said Mr Court. “It also opens up a range of future diversification opportunities, such as the prospect of hosting charging stations on-farm for electric vehicles.”

He predicted that the UK was likely to see a much more flexible energy market in the months ahead.

“Time of Use tariffs are currently under consultation, but will allow farms to use electricity when it’s cheapest to do so, with the right control system in place,” he said. “Developments in lithium ion batteries have also reduced the size and cost of the technology. Leading to more feasible ‘behind the meter’ domestic storage and commercial-scale systems, which support existing grid infrastructure for wind and solar farms."

Mr Court was speaking at this week's Energy Now Expo, at the Telford International Centre, an event dedicated to the growth of renewables within agricultural and rural communities.

“It’s been a busy year for energy storage on a policy framework level, which can be seen in the latest Government targets,” he said. “The UK is currently one of the best places in the world for advancing this technology, and I believe that farmers will continue to be at the forefront of these developments.”