As wind levels soar, the UK needs more grid-scale batteries

The UK produced a record amount of wind power in 2022, with wind farms contributing 26.8% of electricity. However, as wind generation continues to soar, the country needs more grid-scale batteries to make sure this power is harnessed to its full potential.

On 2nd November the UK’s onshore and offshore wind farms generated more than 20 gigawatts (GW) for the first time ever. This was the third time in under 30 days that a record for wind generation was broken, following 17.6GW on 5th October and 19.936GW on 27th October. Over the next few years we are likely to see repeated record-breaking levels of wind generation, as the rollout of offshore wind farms continues and we transition ever-closer to a clean grid.

There is growing investment into both onshore and offshore wind and the British Energy Security Strategy released in 2022 targeted ‘up to 50GW of offshore wind’. This is all good news, and yet the transition from fossil fuel power generation to weather-dependent wind and solar brings challenges in making sure supply is sensibly balanced to match demand.

Wind generation is one of the most cost effective ways of producing renewable energy in the UK, but due to constraints on the transmission network, in the first week of October only 14.1GW of 17.6GW was deployed. We do not yet have the figures on how much of the more recent wind energy entered the grid. However, we do know that we need more grid-scale batteries in order for more renewable energy to be used.

Batteries are an essential component of any net zero energy system. Grid-scale batteries, such as those constructed and operated by Eelpower, provide the flexibility needed to balance intermittent wind, hydro and solar power with the demands of the grid. By working with a wide range of partners – from land developers to battery and technology suppliers to investors and more – Eelpower maximises the value of investments in batteries that make the energy transition possible.