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The Blueprint

Keeping the lights on

Keeping the lights on 

  • Energy storage solves the intermittency of renewables
  • Also helps save energy for heavy industries like steel

Investing in large-scale energy storage builds a reliable and resilient energy grid for the future – putting worries over the intermittency of renewables like solar and wind to bed. From data centers to rural farms, energy storage is transforming sectors by saving clean energy, stabilising grids, and enhancing productivity

Photo: Freepik

From our homes and offices to the things we eat and read each day, we can’t live without steel, data, and food.

Over one-quarter of steel produced is used in buildings every year. Shifting heavy industries like steel away from fossil fuels is notoriously difficult due to high heat requirements, massive upfront costs, and decades-long equipment lifespans. Thermal methods can recover more than 60% of the heat energy in steel slag and replace fossil fuels used in steel production.

Data centres are the backbone of the digital era – ensuring that businesses can operate, communities can connect and individuals are able to access entertainment and online banking services. Energy storage systems act as ready reserves to keep data centres running – saving excess sunshine and wind power for when generation drops. In 2022, an American multinational technology company rolled out a 2.75 MWh storage system in Belgium – enough to support an estimated 200 four-room HDB households per day. During power outages, the storage system keeps the lights on with clean energy and helps stabilise the grid.

To feed a population of 9.1 billion in 2050 would require food production to jump by about 70% between the mid-2000s to 2050 (FAO). In rural areas, energy storage systems can unlock productivity by providing farmers with on-demand electricity – bringing reliable power to remote areas and improving livelihoods. Farmers can then refrigerate crops, power irrigation systems, and process harvested goods using accessible, cleaner energy.

Buoyant batteries

Singapore is set to launch operations for its first floating power plant with batteries in Q1 of this year. Aside from power generation, the plant can charge electric harbour craft, light up remote islands, and refuel ships. Its compact design and 7.5 MWh battery can power over 600 four-room HDB households a day. This innovative platform highlights the potential to combine energy storage with other applications.

Looking forward 

Ignoring the urgency to triple renewables by 2030 risks widening the energy gap between countries, persistent reliance on fossil fuels, and missed opportunities for innovation like rural electrification and energy storage solutions. PCM ESG Research Objective 3 (Measuring Positive Change and Impact) stands firmly behind companies working towards a net-zero future by accelerating the adoption of clean energy and storage – accelerating access and scaling the availability of renewables. Even though the G20 is producing almost 90% of global renewable power production and could triple their installed capacity by 2030, the remaining countries are a far cry from achieving this. Continued dependence on fossil fuels hinders climate action, clean energy access, and the collective quest for a sustainable future.

Important Information

This material is provided by Phillip Capital Management (S) Ltd (“PCM”) for general information only and does not constitute a recommendation, an offer to sell, or a solicitation of any offer to invest in any of the exchange-traded fund (“ETF”) or the unit trust (“Products”) mentioned herein. It does not have any regard to your specific investment objectives, financial situation and any of your particular needs.

The information provided herein may be obtained or compiled from public and/or third party sources that PCM has no reason to believe are unreliable. Any opinion or view herein is an expression of belief of the individual author or the indicated source (as applicable) only. PCM makes no representation or warranty that such information is accurate, complete, verified or should be relied upon as such. The information does not constitute, and should not be used as a substitute for tax, legal or investment advice.

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