From ‘Drill, Baby, Drill’ To ‘It’s The Storage, Stupid’: Have Batteries Come Of Age?
Last week Elon Musk introduced his Tesla Powerwall home and business energy storage unit to the public in an event that got less press than the release of a new iPhone. But the story is actually much bigger. Reliable energy storage combined with the continued growth of distributed solar energy generation, driven in part by SolarCity, could lead to a long-term renewable based power grid—the beginning of end of carbon based energy for electrical power generation.
The other big energy use of oil is as a transportation fuel. But combine a robust renewable energy grid with Tesla Motors‘s autos, or next generation electric cars, perhaps designed by Apple, which will introduce its first vehicle by 2020, or driverless cars from Google, and a carbon-less energy future starts to look not only possible but commercially viable, and financially competitive with coal, oil and possibly even natural gas. Is it time to short big utilities?