Senator Susan Collins, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, announced that the 2022 omnibus spending bill, which passed earlier in the month, contains $500 million in funding to support the development of energy storage technology.
The funding, which is available for energy storage activities authorized under the Better Energy Storage Technology (BEST) Act, is set to be divided across divided across five government agencies:
- $347 million for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
- $120 million for the Office of Electricity
- $5 million for the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management
- $4 million for the Office of Nuclear Energy
- $24 million for the Office of Science
The BEST Act aims to increase the affordability of energy storage and related technologies by supporting Department of Energy (DOE) research, planning and technical assistance, and demonstration and pilot projects.
“Energy storage technology holds great promise in our efforts to combat climate change,” said Senator Collins. “By strengthening current technology and advancing next-generation energy storage, we can integrate more renewables, such as wind and solar, which in turn will help to reduce emissions.”
Recognizing the significant cost declines and subsequent increase in economic viability that solar and wind have seen in the last decade, the Federal Government has made a concerted effort as of late to realize the same cost declines in storage, which will only serve to bolster the efficacy of all renewable generation sources.
In July 2021, DOE set a goal to reduce the cost of grid-scale, long duration energy storage by 90% within the decade, as part of its Energy Earthshot Initiative. I’m announcing that goal, DOE also shared that increased federal funding would be needed to make this goal a reality. Both the Energy Earthshot Initiative and the funding initiatives enabled by today’s announcement will consider all types of technologies, including electrochemical, mechanical, thermal, chemical carriers, or any combination with the potential to meet duration and cost targets for grid flexibility.
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