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PRESS RELEASENovember 28, 2023

World Bank Unveils Comprehensive Framework to Accelerate Solar-Plus-Storage Adoption in Developing Countries

WASHINGTON, Nov. 28, 2023—The World Bank Group today launched its seminal new report, "Unlocking the Energy Transition: Guidelines for Planning Solar-Plus-Storage Projects," outlining a start-to-finish framework for developing countries to successfully plan, structure, and execute utility-scale solar photovoltaic projects integrated with battery energy storage.

The new comprehensive guidelines aim to accelerate the transition from traditional fossil fuel-based power generation to cleaner, more reliable, and affordable solar-plus-storage systems in emerging economies. Battery storage systems are critically important in conjunction with renewable energy generation as they guarantee continuous energy supply. Battery energy storage captures renewable energy when available and dispatches it when needed most.

The report provides practical guidance to policymakers and project developers on conducting initial feasibility assessments, selecting suitable business models, allocating risks appropriately, and navigating the competitive procurement process for solar-plus-storage projects. It examines real-world case studies from diverse geographies and distills critical lessons learned to empower stakeholders in scaling up solar-plus-storage capacity.

Key Points of the Report:

  • The report provides a practical 4-phase guided framework covering project identification, business model selection, risk allocation, and competitive procurement.
  • It examines three tailored business models for solar-plus-storage power purchase agreements: two-part contract, capacity contract, and blended contract.
  • Real-world case studies showcase successful model implementations across diverse geographies.
  • A decision tree enables practitioners to evaluate trade-offs and select suitable models based on local contexts.
  • The ready-to-use toolkit aims to accelerate solar-plus-storage adoption at scale by unlocking private investment.

"Solar-plus-storage systems can provide clean, affordable, and reliable electricity access in developing countries while reducing dependence on fossil-based energy systems," said World Bank Vice President for Infrastructure Guangzhe Chen. "This seminal report offers comprehensive guidelines for governments to design policies that enable competitive procurement of solar-plus-storage projects at scale with private sector participation."

Over the past three years, the World Bank has mobilized approximately $850 million in climate financing for battery storage projects globally. This includes 5.5 GWh of storage capacity already operational and 3.7 GWh more in the pipeline across the developing world. Last fiscal year, the Bank helped finance India's largest battery project to date, a 120 MWh facility awarded by SECI, showcasing the power of collective climate action. The Bank is also prioritizing the deployment of storage solutions for Small Island Developing States like the Maldives, which recently signed its first storage project of 40 MWh across its outer islands where decentralized renewable energy integration faces unique challenges. Solar-plus-storage projects will play a critical role in building resilient, sustainable energy systems of the future.

The report will be presented at the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP28 in early December in Dubai, UAE. This will be an opportunity for developing countries to discuss challenges, share knowledge, and forge partnerships to adopt solar-plus-storage planning frameworks. The World Bank is committed to providing tailored advisory services and financing instruments to assist emerging economies in navigating the complex energy transition.

The full report is available for download here. It was developed by the World Bank's Energy Storage Partnership at ESMAP.


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