With the UK’s energy system becoming increasingly “democratised” and businesses and individuals generating and selling, as well as buying, energy, regulator Ofgem is not taking sufficient measures to bring about a flexible energy future. That is according to the Renewable Energy Association (REA) and ElectraLink, which have this week published a joint report revealing that the amount of energy generated and ‘exported’ back to the British grid doubled between 2012 and 2018. Called ‘Flexible Futures’, the report reveals that more than 60% of exported power in Britain now comes from generation methods with varying outputs, such as wind and solar. It additionally states that more than three million UK households are now customers of energy companies which offer exclusively “100% renewable” electricity packages, with such offerings also gaining popularity in the business space – particularly heavy industry, manufacturing and retail.
Edie 25th Oct 2019 read more »
From Cheshire to Cumbria, thousands of people may soon be waiting a little longer for kettles to boil. A small sacrifice, perhaps, for cheaper energy. Under plans to lower the voltage of energy grids across the north-west of England, about 45,000 homes can expect to shave £60 from their annual electricity bills. The scheme could save millions of pounds on energy a year and cut carbon emissions without people noticing any difference, says the local network company. During “Smart Street” trials over four years, engineers for Electricity North West found they could carefully lower the grid’s voltage by enough to save on energy without noticeably slowing household appliances or causing light bulbs to flicker. “Nobody noticed the changes until they were given their bill and suddenly found out they’d been using less electricity,” said Steve Cox, the company’s engineering director. “If we reduced the voltage by a few percent, then a full kettle might take eight seconds longer to boil. If we boost the voltage, it might boil eight seconds faster. But within the typical time it takes to boil a kettle, say two minutes, this really isn’t noticeable.”
Guardian 27th Oct 2019 read more »