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Austria making €18 million available for medium-scale energy storage projects

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Some €17.9 million (US$19 million) in grants will be made available for ‘medium size’ distributed-scale energy storage projects in Austria.

The country’s Climate and Energy Fund has launched a new call for proposals for ‘Medium-sized electricity storage systems’ of between 51kWh and 1MWh in energy storage capacity. Projects can either be new ones or extensions of existing systems to meet the size specification.

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The Federal Ministry for Climate Protection (BMK) is providing €10 million of the funding while €7.9 million is coming from the EU’s European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). The deadline for project proposals is 28 February, 2025, 12 pm local time.

The announcement said the projects should be operated in a way that benefits the grid via their interaction with other parts of the energy system. The call for proposals is particularly aimed at investors who want to optimise their own consumption of energy generated at their PV plants to help with grid stability.

People, companies, utilities, public institutions, contractors and energy communities are all eligible to apply, with a maximum of five projects allowed per entity.

The announcement did not specify a technology, but at that scale technologies would most likely use electrochemical storage, most commonly lithium-ion.

Climate protection minister Leonore Gewessler said: “By 2030, we want to generate our electricity only from clean energy sources. Medium-sized electricity storage systems enable us to integrate renewable energy into the power grid more efficiently – and thus achieve our goal!”

Although not specified, it sounds like most projects targeted as part of this will be behind-the-meter (BTM) applications. However, the country’s front-of-meter (FTM) grid-scale market is also developing, with a 20MWh battery energy storage system (BESS) commissioned in September 2023 by developer NGEN, the country’s largest.

Energy-Storage.news has heard anecdotally that opportunities in the ancillary services market in Austria have grown substantially since continental Europe started the process of harmonising its ancillary service market via the creation of the automatic frequency restoration reserve (aFRR) market.

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