The U.S. energy storage market is robust and offers tremendous potential for growth over the next five years, according to the findings of a just-released study sponsored by the Copper Development Association (CDA) and conducted by KEMA, Inc., a leading authority in global energy consulting, testing, and certification based in The Netherlands. The study, "Market Evaluation for Energy Storage in the U.S.," determines the current market for grid energy storage in the U.S. and the associated copper demand in storage applications over the next five years.

Thermal energy storage, pumped hydro power, compressed air energy storage (CAES), and distributed applications currently constitute the majority of the energy storage market and are used to support the integration of renewables such as wind power and solar photovoltaics (PV). In fact, increased use of renewable sources is dependent on the development of effective energy storage. The Electricity Storage Association (ESA) cites energy storage as "the resource-neutral, emission-free set of solutions for a more reliable, robust electric grid that enables all energy sources to operate more efficiently and effectively."

The study estimates between two and four gigawatts of energy storage could be developed depending on financial incentives. Over the next five years, it is expected that the cost of energy storage will decrease, strong investment will continue, and demonstrations will move into full commercialization.