Will we ever run out of energy?
We rely heavily on fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas) for over 80 per cent of our current energy needs and with energy demand expected to grow by almost half over the next two decades, there is fear that that our resources are starting to run out.
The potential for crisis is very real but there is still time before that emergency occurs, and significant hope rests with the Renewable Electricity Generation and Storage sector.
“Energy storage markets around the world are expected to continue growing substantially in North America from $40 billion in 2016 to $50 billion by 2020 according to Lux Research,” says Ray de Ocampo, CFO of Toronto-based energy management experts, ONEnergy. “This represents a 25 per cent increase annually over the next four years.”
Created following the purchase of Sunwave Gas & Power by Look Communications in July 2013, ONEnergy has served commercial, industrial and residential customers across Canada and the U.S. through ONEnergy and Sunwave branded energy and energy-efficiency products. Recently they introduced PowerCor – an advanced solar energy storage product that ONEnergy feels is a breakthrough that will have a substantial impact in the renewable energy sector.
“Advanced lithium-ion battery technologies coupled with intelligent multi-generation inverters are becoming the dominant energy storage device,” mentions Sandro Costa, Vice-President, Energy Efficiency at ONEnergy. “Our PowerCor energy storage product is based on best-in-class LG Chem lithium-ion batteries.”
New technologies, like lithium-ion batteries, offer improved operational flexibility, enhanced charge/discharge cycle life, and in some cases, longer duration.
Why store energy?
For energy users, Global Adjustment charges represent a large part of electricity costs. Energy storage can help significantly reduce these costs by peak shaving, or using lower-cost stored energy during peak hours to avoid high rates. ONEnergy’s PowerCor technology is highly scalable – from small, residential 6.4 kilowatt hour (kWh) systems up to multi-megawatt large industrial and utility-scale solutions.
In addition to protecting sensitive systems from unpredictable and possibly damaging power grid fluctuations and outages, combined with solar power generation, customers can further reduce their environmental footprint by using less of the grid’s power and more stored solar power warehoused in PowerCor technology.
Regulatory red tape cut
ONEnergy generated $18 million in revenue from its American electricity customers in 2015. This represented 79 per cent of their total annual revenue. And the future looks even brighter.
Recent regulatory changes that allow the use of energy storage when paired with renewable energy generation should result in a larger demand for ONEnergy’s PowerCor product in Canada and the U.S.
ONEnergy maintains their status of industry leader by always being on the cutting edge of technology and actively marketing their products and services in Canada and aboard. “We understand that each of our customers is unique,” says Costa. “We make it our priority to provide all the information and options available to help them make the best choice for their energy needs.”
The future is energized
After succeeding in the faster-paced, more entrepreneurial U.S. business market, ONEnergy plans to make waves further south. “We are exploring opportunities in the Caribbean where the atmosphere is even more entrepreneurial and the regulatory environment is still developing,” says Ray de Ocampo. “Our ability to tackle that setting stems from our experience building ONEnergy from the ground-up within a quickly changing market.”
The near unlimited supply potential of renewable energy sources should ensure that the world does not fall short of its energy needs.