By Kevin Williams
Most of the attention in the energy storage industry has focused on industrial utility grid-scale storage. However, behind-the-meter applications have been massively charging up as well. In 2016, energy storage deployment in the U.S. grew to 336 megawatt hours, which was double that amount in the previous year.
Behind-the-meter deployments represented nearly 25 percent of this amount, and the U.S. energy storage market as a whole is projected to reach 7.3 gigawatts and to be worth $3.3 billion by 2022, according to GreenTech Media. The sheer size of the opportunity is a boon to HVAC contractors who are positioned to take advantage of energy storage technology.
Behind-the-Meter Energy Storage Opportunities for HVAC Contractors
All of this information means that there are excellent opportunities for HVAC contractors to sell, install, and maintain energy storage systems in the commercial and residential electrical industry segment. This is especially true with an intelligent energy storage system that can be integrated with a smart HVAC system to heat or cool a building depending on ambient temperatures to optimize energy costs.
There are many business models that lend themselves to allowing HVAC companies to capitalize on the opportunity presented by the growth of behind-the-meter storage. This can generate additional revenue streams and help create new customer relationships while deepening existing ones. Here are some other indicators of the opportunity in behind-the-meter energy storage for HVAC contractors:
- According to GTM Research’s latest report, The Behind-the-Meter Energy Storage Landscape 2016-2021, the growth of behind-the-meter energy storage will create opportunities for companies throughout the entire industry. This includes startups, well-established businesses, and huge companies.
- Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) predicts that behind-the-meter energy storage will overtake grid-scale storage as the largest energy market segment by 2021 and will account for two-thirds of energy storage capacity by 2024.
- Electricity prices are projected to increase across the U.S. through 2018, creating a greater demand for money-saving energy storage technology.
HVAC contractors are needed to serve as integrators to allow consumers to take advantage of the benefits that behind-the-meter energy storage technology provides. That’s because they have the knowledge and ability to sell, install, and maintain energy storage solutions in the commercial and residential markets. Without their expertise, smart HVAC and energy storage technology solutions won’t be feasible in these sectors, and the opportunity will be lost.
About the Author
Kevin Williams is the CEO of WISE Distributed Energy, an Internet of Things (IoT) company with energy storage capabilities. He has been a principal in several start-ups and has consulted with business owners at many levels. For more information, visit http://www.willcoenergy.com.