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Why Energy Storage Matters

April 14, 2024

If you’re thinking about a career in the energy sector, it’s important to look for emerging trends and not just what is trending right now. This can help you to stay ahead of the curve and position yourself as a highly desirable candidate, rather than showing up late to the party.

Everyone knows that renewable energy is the future, but do you know which sectors will be booming in the coming years? All eyes seem to be on offshore wind and solar as an attractive alternative to fossil fuels, but generating the power is only one part of the equation.

In order for renewable energy to be a successful alternative to fossil fuels, we need to be able to harness and store the energy. This is why energy storage is fast becoming one of the most important parts of the renewable energy puzzle.

What is energy storage?

At the moment, we can harness the power of the wind, sun and sea to produce energy on demand. But for these energy sources to become a viable alternative to fossil fuels, we need to be able to store the energy during times of surplus. 

Energy storage is an emerging technology that will be required on a large-scale to help provide a reliable source of energy for the National Grid. It could also be deployed on a small scale, allowing individual homes to produce and store their own energy, making them less reliant on the National Grid.

Why does energy storage matter?

Energy storage is the missing piece of the puzzle that will allow us to deploy renewable energy on a large scale. At the moment, renewable energy is not reliable enough to be able to be our sole source of energy. The country could not function if energy is only available when the sun is shining, the wind is blowing, and the waves are strong.

Renewable energy needs to not only be harnessed, but then stored so it can be deployed when needed. Think about the way demand for energy spikes at certain times during the day, and at specific times of year. During TV advert breaks, there is commonly a spike in demand for energy as the country gets up to put the kettle on.

Without energy storage, renewable energy cannot power the country, because we are not in control of production. We would be unable to increase provisions to meet spikes in demand without the introduction of reliable energy storage methods.

Is energy storage a good career path?

When looking at engineering careers, many candidates focus on the deployment of renewable energy capture methods such as solar panels and wind farms. But these aren’t the only career paths you should consider.

There is a lot of work to be done in the energy storage sector, and this is why it is a future-proof career path. This is a sector that will always be improving and advancing, so you can be confident there will be roles to fill for decades to come.

You could be involved in a planning capacity, in research and development, or in maintenance. You could also be involved on a national scale, providing large-scale energy storage units to pair with wind or solar farms, or you could be involved in getting renewable energy into individual homes. 

Many homeowners have opted to install solar panels on their properties, and this could soon be followed by storage facilities to enable them to use the energy at night, not just when the sun is shining.

What is the future of energy storage?

The world’s energy storage capacity is expected to exceed its energy usage by 2030. This could pave the way for countries to move away from fossil fuels entirely and power homes and businesses using the power of the wind, sun and the sea. This is likely to drive down energy prices while also helping to improve the environment.

Energy storage is an exciting emerging industry that is likely to see huge growth in recruitment over the next 5 to 10 years. Training in energy storage technology now could help you to secure a spot in this pioneering sector. If you want to future-proof your engineering career, energy storage is a safe bet.

Closing thoughts

Energy storage is the missing piece of the puzzle that will help countries to become less reliant on fossil fuels and finally make the switch to renewable energy. Research and development is ongoing to help make batteries more reliable and capable of plugging the gap in demand for energy.

If you’re thinking about a career in renewable energy, focusing on energy storage research and development would be a surefire way to future-proof your career prospects and place yourself at the centre of some of the most exciting developments we can expect to see over the next decade.

Nolan Recruitment is a Specialist Engineering Recruitment Agency. One of the UK's best Engineering & Technical Recruiter

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