A community battery is a mid-scale energy storage unit (about the size of 4 large fridges) that is embedded in the network, allowing for shared energy storage.
Photo of our Fitzroy North community battery, the first inner-urban community battery in Australia.
Community batteries provide numerous benefits to residents, communities, and the entire electricity grid.
They essentially act as a ‘solar sponge’ – storing excess clean, cheap, and local solar energy (generated by rooftop solar arrays within the community) for use later in the day when demand is higher, and the sun is no longer shining.
This allows connected residents to use more of the renewable electricity they generate during the day.
The entire concept is designed for a neighbourhood, which allows the wider community to access and store renewable energy. Community batteries can provide power to everyone connected to the part of the sub-network, no matter which energy retailer they use or whether they have solar panels installed.
This helps put downward pressure energy prices, lowers our reliance on fossil fuel powered energy therefore reducing emissions, facilitates more solar installations, and even helps stabilise the grid.
The term ‘neighbourhood battery’ is a broader term referring to similar scale batteries, but which do not necessarily directly involve or benefit the community.