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Green Globe: Key developments in store for solar-plus-storage in Asia Pacific

Asia Pacific could see significant deployments of solar-plus-storage systems in the next five years as the levelized cost of electricity, or LCOE, of such facilities is expected to decline, energy research and consultancy firm Wood Mackenzie said.

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India is one of the countries in Asia that could see competitive unsubsidized commercial and industrial solar-plus-storage.
Source: Associated Press

"[W]e expect the average solar-plus-storage LCOE in Asia Pacific to decrease 23% from US$133/megawatt hour (MWh) this year to US$101/MWh in 2023," said Wood Mackenzie analyst Rishab Shrestha.

Australia is set to lead the region for the most economically viable solar-plus-storage systems. "The country's utility-scale solar-plus-storage LCOE will hover at about 23% above average wholesale electricity price," Shrestha added.

Other countries that could see competitive unsubsidized commercial and industrial solar-plus-storage are India and the Philippines. Thailand should have a utility-scale solar-plus-storage LCOE below the average wholesale electricity price by 2023, because the industrial price used as a proxy for wholesale prices in Thailand, which lacks a competitive wholesale market, is higher compared to other markets.

Japan could also be an attractive market, with feed-in-tariffs for 600 MW of solar projects expiring this 2019.

Solar-plus-storage is seen as a solution to grid resiliency and renewables intermittency in Asia Pacific's power markets, but recent fires and explosions threaten to derail the sector's momentum.

A separate report from GlobalData sees the world's battery storage capacity growing 7% year-on-year with Asia Pacific and the Europe, Middle East and Africa regions taking the lead, according to Renewables Now. The Asia Pacific Region accounted for 45% of the cumulative installed storage capacity globally in 2018.

Turkey has released its long-expected net metering rules for 3-kW to 10 kW systems, which are intended to allow Turkish homeowners and businesses to install solar photovoltaic systems without need for official approval and to sell excess power to distributors, pv magazine reported.

The scheme will reportedly be available to projects with a self-consumption rate of at least 50% and the net metering tariff will match the electricity price for residential customers, the online news outlet said, citing Icarus Energy managing partner Eren Engür.

Grid operator TEİAŞ has noted that around 5.4 GW of solar photovoltaic are connected to the country's power network, and the country's solar power association Günder expects the country to reach 14 GW of solar in 2023. Still, Turkey remains heavily reliant on coal, oil and gas. Although it has signed the Paris Agreement on climate change, it has yet to ratify it, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

"Turkey has made a good start on shifting to cleaner energy but needs to step up its efforts and increase investment in geothermal, solar and wind power," said OECD Environment Director Rodolfo Lacy in a Feb. 2 statement.

Wind provided 37% of Ireland's electricity in the first quarter of 2019, according to the Irish Wind Energy Association.

Electricity generated by wind totaled 2,827,067 MWh in the first quarter of 2019, an increase from 2,731,000 MWh in the same period a year ago.

"We had a very strong start to the year for wind energy, particularly in February when energy produced the most electricity, even surpassing natural gas, so we hope to build on this in the coming months," IWEA CEO David Connolly said in a May 16 statement.

Ireland now ranks second among European countries for wind power production, the Irish Examiner reported in March.

Elsewhere

* CellCube Energy Storage Systems Inc. and Pangea Energy Ltd. signed a letter of intent to build a 50-MW/200-MWh energy storage system in Australia.

* Japan's ORIX Corp. plans to exercise its right to buy the remaining 51% stake it does not own in seven operating wind power plants in India from the IL&FS Group.

* Scatec Solar ASA has placed in service its 65-MWdc Jasin solar power plant in Malaysia. This doubles the company's assets in operation in the country to 130 MW.

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