If use becomes widespread, energy storage devices (essentially large batteries) for wind farms and solar farms may result in a clean energy supply independent of utility companies. Accommodating clean energy is only cost effective for utility companies to certain point. Because utility companies have to “spin the meter backwards” it interrupts the process of energy distribution. Because the clean energy must be transfered through a grid-tie much of the power is lost in transition. With on-site energy storage that regulate time intervals of high energy output for storage, wind farms and solar farms will reach maximum levels of efficiency. Cost and maintenance of these devices is generally expensive but the first URL below features an Australian R&D center that may have found a more practical solution for such devices.
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