How Energy Storage Can Increase Carbon Emissions
“How can energy storage increase carbon emissions?”
Numerous renewable energy proponents around the world are promoting energy storage as the solution to intermittency. However, if not planned out carefully, energy storage can be very unsustainable. This is because energy storage can store any type of energy, clean or not, with a preference for cheaper inputs. This means that cheaper overnight coal might be used for storage and then placed against more expensive natural gas or solar. In addition, energy is lost during storage, so the net efficiency drops as well. This is How Energy Storage Can Increase Carbon Emissions.
Image and research credit Hittinger, E. S., & Azevedo, I. M. (2015). Bulk energy storage increases United States electricity system emissions. Environmental science & technology, 49(5), 3203-3210.