It was announced last week by Business Secretary Greg Clark that the first phase of the Government’s plan to kick start the UK’s nascent battery revolution is a £246m boost to develop expertise in battery technology. If the UK is to take centre stage and become a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of electric batteries then a new generation of energy storage products will be required.
The Government and Ofgem have stated that they will also assess the need for more ‘proactive communications’ on smart energy to educate and inform the public.
Ian Murray, Managing Director of UK battery storage company – Powerflow Energy, believes that having an informed public is critical to the successful take up of battery storage products:
He explained: “Unfortunately, there are a lot of untruths being told about domestic battery storage systems, such as exaggerated claims about the economics of buying one, payback times and the impact of them on electricity bills. The average person simply doesn’t know enough about the technology to ask the right questions.
“Buyers should be asking informed questions, not only about battery life span safety, but also how the system actually works in terms of capturing and releasing energy, as this is the key to an efficient battery storage system. The truth is most of the current systems on the market today react too slowly to changes in energy demand. This means consumers could end up buying energy from the grid to store in their battery, or taking energy from the battery and exporting back to the grid again, – completely defeating its purpose.
“Without more honesty and education, the industry is in danger of shooting itself in the foot before it’s taken off.”