If you’re like the majority of people, the idea of storing solar energy in water sounds confusing and virtually impossible. Who has ever heard of pumped hydro storage for solar before? Yet “energy storage” is the renewable industry’s latest buzz phrase, and it is changing at a rate faster than anyone but those designing it can keep up with.
“But why should I care about storage?” you ask. Great question! At the end of the day, it’s about how much money you want to keep in your wallet. Our ability to store energy more effectively will directly impact the price you pay for your electricity.
Wind power has long been stored using pumped hydro. When there is too much wind that the grid doesn’t need right then; the excess wind power is used to pump water up to a reservoir. When the electricity is needed, it is allowed to rush down to turn hydropower turbines.