The bank aims to finance 17.5 gigawatt-hours of battery storage capacity by 2025, which is more than triple the 4.5 or so gigawatt-hours installed in all developing countries today. The U.S. has 0.867 gigawatt-hours of installed battery storage capacity on its electrical grid.
“Batteries are critical to decarbonizing the world’s power systems. They allow us to store wind and solar energy and deploy it when it’s needed most to provide people with clean, affordable, round-the-clock power,” World Bank president Jim Yong Kim said in his address.
Batteries are a natural complement to several renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind and hydropower, because those sources vary so much over the course of a day and year. With battery storage, electricity users can be more independent of unreliable and slow-growing national electrical grids. Banks of batteries can enable communities to build so-called mini-grids, which offer small, remote communities some of the benefits national grids. The World Bank already helps finance mini-grids around the world.
Global electricity access was 87.4 percent in 2016, the World Bank estimates, but in low income countries the rate plunges to 38.8 percent.
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