In a decentralised energy system energy supply is mainly produced independently of centralised control. In this system balancing and energy storage take on a new, and in some ways, much more important role compared to the old paradigm of centralised dispatch.
Cassarino and Barratt set out how the amount of energy storage needed in a given year to maintain a 100% renewable energy system can be reduced by large amounts by either ‘overcapacity’ of renewables or increasing the amount of international electricity. But large amount of storage will still be needed to cope with the biggest issue, that is inter-annual differences in renewable energy production. See the following pages for discussions of how this can work: