The number of solar storage systems installed in Germany has doubled to 200,000 in two years, while prices have halved in recent years, the country’s solar industry federation (BSW) said.

Both last year and in 2018, demand for PV storage systems has risen by some 50%, and the federation reckons the market will grow even this year, despite the coronavirus pandemic.

“More and more citizens and businesses want to cover as large shares as possible of their power demand with the help of photovoltaics in a climate friendly an economical way,” said BSW managing director Carsten Körnig.

“The installation of a solar battery currently is part of new solar roofs in most cases.”

Germany has one of the world’s highest shares of solar power in its electricity mix, making the use of storage more urgent. PV accounted for 9% of power needs in the country last year, and a record 17% last month, according to figures from the Fraunhofer ISE research institute and the Agora Energiewende think-tank respectively.

The BSW cautions, however, that the capacity of German battery storage systems needs to rise tenfold to some 18 gigawatt hours in the coming ten years in order to reach the country’s climate targets, avoid gaps in power supply and even out intermittent generation of renewables.

The federation also said self-consumed solar power must no longer be burdened with the payment of a levy to finance renewable power (EEG surcharge) German consumers have to pay on top of their electricity bill.

“The ‘solar tax’ goes against EU law and currently blocks a meaningful refitting of hundreds of thousands of solar power installations, which after 20 year in operation from 2021 on will fall out of the EEG [Renewable Energy Act] support system.”

As fluctuating generation from renewables is increasing while base load generation capacity is declining, the need for storage capacity rises to guarantee supply and grid stability, the BSW explains.