In a move to become the “European leader” in energy storage, EDF, the state-owned utility of France, said it plans to spend 8 billion euros ($9.8 billion) to build 10,000 MW of new energy storage by 2035.
EDF already owns and operates 5,000 MW of pumped storage hydropower.
What’s more, the utility said it is doubling its investment in energy storage research and development to 70 million euros for the 2018-2020 period.
The investment in storage stems from growing supplies of intermittent renewable power, which means power producers require more standby reserves to fill the gaps created by the variability of wind and solar power.
“The new limit the group is setting is a 100 percent carbon-free power system by 2050,” EDF CEO Jean-Bernard Lévy said. “By its scale, the electricity storage plan, like the solar plan, confirms EDF’s ability to enable a competitive ecosystem in order to make our carbon-free future a reality.”
Over the next year, EDF plans to complete three battery storage projects. Pumped storage and batteries will comprise 6,000 MW of new utility-scale storage under the plan. Another 4,000 MW will come from projects designed to serve retail customers, businesses and municipalities.
The storage plan is the second major energy investment announced by EDF in recent months. In December, EDF announced plans to spend 25 billion euros to build 30,000 MW of solar capacity by 2035.
At POWER-GEN International 2018, attendees will have the opportunity to attend six sessions that examine the market for energy storage and a range of storage technologies.