Southeast Europe is facing an unprecedented energy and climate security crisis – precipitated by Russia’s energy blackmail and exacerbated by the delayed low-carbon transition and the persisting energy poverty emergency in the region. Accelerating the decarbonisation process will be instrumental for ensuring greater resilience to energy and climate security risks in the long run. To get there, Southeast Europe needs to unleash the enormous potential of storage technologies as a tool for accommodating greater shares of variable renewables, all the while reducing reliance on natural gas, improving the resilience of the electricity system, and protecting countries, businesses, and households from energy price volatility.
This analysis provides a comprehensive, yet concise slide-deck overview of the current state of play for the available energy storage technologies, from pumped hydro, through mechanical and thermal energy storage, to batteries in their wide chemistry variety. Battery storage technologies have already experienced a steep learning curve over the past decade, leading to significant cost reductions and accelerated deployment on a global scale. To fully leverage the numerous use-cases of energy storage technologies, from grid scale services to customer-level applications, governments in Southeast Europe need to tackle a number of regulatory and administrative barriers, develop more sophisticated electricity market design and support a circular economy approach with up to 95% recycling of battery materials (including rare earths).
Тhe report has been developed by E3 Analytics in collaboration with the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD).