For agricultural landowners looking to diversify, battery storage technology has advanced quickly in recent years and offers new and profitable opportunities.
Developments for battery energy storage typically involve an option agreement for lease of a portion of land to a third-party energy developer, who is responsible for the installation and operation of the battery storage on the land.
How does battery storage work?
The battery energy storage system works by either charging the system from the grid or by storing electricity generated by other renewable technologies during periods of low demand or excess production, before discharging the stored electricity into the grid during periods of high demand or when other renewable energy sources (such as solar or wind) are unavailable. This helps to stabilise the supply and demand of electricity on the grid and with ensuring the grid produces a reliable supply of energy.
When considering battery storage, developers will take several factors into account, such as the availability of a grid connection, changes of acquisition of planning, means of access and, if it is co-located with other renewable energy generation, the expected energy usage and storage needs. The size and type of the system can then be tailored to the specific site requirements.
Battery rents are attractive to a landowner because the development area required for such projects are usually far less than that of other renewable technologies such as ground mount solar for example. On an acreage comparison basis, battery projects can offer good returns to landowners especially to those who either do not have, or do not want to demise a substantial proportion of their landholding to a developer. That being said and as discussed above, landowners with battery storage developments on their land can often take advantage of other renewable sources such as solar or wind power, to which it is often seen as an ancillary technology.
The level of rent can vary depending on many factors, including the size and location of the area of land and its proximity to the grid, the amount of electricity the battery storage system can store, and the demand for electricity by the grid in the area. A renewable energy consultant and/or land agent with experience in this sector will be able to advise and negotiate the best commercial deals for landowners.
The future of battery storage
The future for battery storage looks very encouraging. Globally, demand for renewable energy is only expected to continue to increase with, for example, the growth of electric vehicles (EV’s) and EV adoption driving demand for charging infrastructure, which in turn will require substantial energy storage capacity to accommodate the peak demand for electricity. It is without doubt that battery storage is therefore a crucial factor in supporting the integration of EV and other renewable energy sources into the grid.
Developments in battery and economies of scale are key drivers in increasing its efficiency and affordability as a technology, creating an attractive investment for developers. The market is poised for substantial growth, as battery technology advances even further and costs reduce; it will continue to become an integral component of the national grid network, creating exciting opportunities for landowners and developers alike.
If you have any further enquiries regarding battery storage’s please feel free to contact our Energy Team.