A record-setting 2.2GWh of new energy storage systems were switched on in the US in the fourth quarter of last year, according to the latest Energy Storage Monitor, a 182% leap from Q3.

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The report, produced by Wood Mackenzie and the US Energy Storage Association (ESA), pointed to continued price declines and “erosion” of barriers to deployment as key to front-of-the-meter (FTM) storage “taking off” in the country.

FTM accounted for 80% of the total energy storage roll-out in the quarter, with the segment contributing 529MW of the total 651MW brought online, while 90MW of residential storage (14%) was added.

“2020 is the first year that advanced energy storage deployments surpassed gigawatt scale – a tremendous milestone on the path to our aspiration of 100GW by 2030,” said Jason Burwen, the ESA’s interim CEO.

“With continuing storage cost declines and growing policy support and regulatory reform in states and the federal government, energy storage is on an accelerating trajectory to enable a resilient, decarbonised, and affordable electric grid for all.”

Dan Finn-Foley, Wood Mackenzie head of energy storage, said: “The data truly speaks for itself. The US installed [over] 3.1GWh of storage from 2013 through 2019, a total that 2020 beat in a single year.

“This is the hallmark of a market beginning to accelerate exponentially, and momentum will only increase over the coming years.”

The report noted that after “gradual growth” in over the first three quarters of last year, Q4 saw a “notable residential spike”, driven in large part by homeowner buy-in in California.

Almost 1.5GW / 3.5GWh of new storage came in to operation over the whole of 2020 in the US, 179% more than in 2019 in GW terms, with the ESA forecasting the market will add “five times more GW of storage in 2025 than was added in 2020, with FTM storage continuing to contribute between 75-85% of new GW each year”.

Analyst group Bloomberg NEF expects the global energy storage market to grow 122-fold by 2040, to 1,095GW/2,850GWh – by which time it will be equivalent to 7% of the world’s total power fleet.