Thriving in 2020: Retail energy providers in the brand new decade

by: Nitin Gupta

What are the key trends that will be shaping the industry in 2020? Let us have a look at some of the predictions made regarding the retail energy for the year 2020.

Sustainability will be adopted as a standard practice

Driven by the growth of disposable income, sustainability is strengthening its foothold. It has moved to the center of the decision-making process for many young shoppers. Therefore, to keep up with customer expectations and needs, the retailers and brands will focus on more sustainable business practices.

For instance, they may switch to ways for reducing waste, sample reduction, and using 3D CADs in place of physical samples. It will be extremely helpful for the businesses to reduce waste while increasing their profitability.

Electricity demand is going to increase exponentially

We are observing a rapid increase in the energy demand across the world despite people trying to be more energy efficient. Specifically speaking, the demand for electricity is going to rise in the coming years. There are a number of factors behind this increase in demand.

Once of the most contributing factors is the rise of electric vehicles in the future. Not only vehicles, the number of electric devices being used in an average household is also increasing rapidly. People are using air conditioners for longer time period than ever.

All of these factors combined together sum up the need of more electricity and energy in the coming years.

Utilities are preparing for EV growth

The power companies are trying to cut down the carbon emissions by greening their energy supply. They also try to electrify additional end uses and power them with a clean energy. The key segments for conversion are heating and cooling industrial processes.

However, the transportation sector is in the lime light for a couple of years. This is due to the fact that EVs or electric vehicles have become increasingly attractive to car buyers and fleet operators. However, the EVs are not just confined to cars. The demand for electronic delivery trucks, transit buses, and school buses is also increasing rapidly.

Grid-scale battery storage

A larger growth is expected in the energy storage installation among the end-users. This is going to happen because of smart grid development. The rapid growth of batter energy storage solutions would be a result of the financial aspect of energy storage in a wide range of applications and the falling system cost.

Additionally, the EVs have contributed in the expansion of the lithium-ion technology development and a significant decline in lithium-based battery cost. Multiple energy storage projects have already been started by incentive programmers. More and more countries are stepping forward to opt for storage utilisation to support their power sector transformation.

Corporate PPAs

The huge companies are signing the power purchase agreements (PPAs) with the power generator companies in order to satisfy their power needs. A majority of the PPAs are signed with the renewable energy generators to increase the renewable energy share in their total power consumption.

Tech giants such as Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft have signed PPAs. We are expecting this trend to increase because of the expanding data centre market. Tesco and Walmart are amongst the popular retailers to sign the PPAs.

Another common reason behind the growth of PPAs is the fact that the governments are withdrawing feed-in-tariffs (FITs) and other incentives for wind and solar power. Not only this, the corporate PPAs provide an opportunity to sell the power profitably.

Natural gas will still be in demand

Though a huge amount of money is spent on the infrastructure, the end-users have observed a slight increase in the energy prices. And the credit for this goes to natural gas. Firstly, natural gas is abundant in nature and secondly, it is extremely affordable. These two factors have contributed in keeping the wholesale prices very low. As a result, the natural gas will still be going strong.

Bottom line

The energy providers are constantly working to devise new plans and ideas for their customers so that they can meet their energy needs. However, many more new technologies and trends are going to arise as the future unfolds itself. So, what’s your strategy to thrive in 2020? Let us know in the comment box.