The grid itself can operate as storage, argues David Littell, a former public utility commissioner in the US state of Maine and now with the global Regulatory Assistance Project. “The grid as storage can be efficient and cost effective. Larger scale grid operations open up geographic potential to move energy, balance energy and reduce the need for capacity and reserves dramatically at scales that smaller storage cannot. On a smaller scale, literal storage, such as the grid-enabled hot water heaters in use for decades, can shift demand peaks to reduce unnecessary supply side costs for high priced peaking plant. New technologies enhance the ability of different forms of storage to be deployed for different uses — but the efficiency is at ...
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