2019 was a year of consolidation rather than breakthroughs for clean energy technologies. Will 2020 be different?
This year will likely be remembered as a period of technology consolidation rather than breakthrough innovation in the energy industry. Emerging industries such as offshore wind and lithium-ion battery storage have gone from strength to strength.
Meanwhile, more novel technologies such as energy blockchains and flow batteries have been relatively quiet this year.
In some respects, this is no bad thing. It signals that many low-carbon grid technologies are maturing and achieving the scale needed to compete with fossil-fuel generation. And there is still plenty of scope for innovation in maturing sectors.
In the battery market, for example, “the supply chain is constantly battling disruptions resulting from limited mineral supply,” said Lindsay Gorrill, CEO at the energy storage firm Kore Power.