Paying businesses to power down 'could save UK billions'

"Britain could save billions of pounds in energy costs by paying businesses to shift their power usage or run their backup generators instead of building new power plants, an industry report has found.

Business energy users could ease strain on the grid by 9.8 gigawatts (GW) - a sixth of peak UK power demand, or more three times the capacity of the proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear plant, the Association for Decentralised Energy (ADE) said. So far as little as 1GW of such capacity is thought to be on offer, but the ADE claimed there was scope for an almost ten-fold increase.

The group estimated that it would be economically viable for industrial users to temporarily cut their demand by 2.8GW, by scheduling power-intensive processes for different times of day.

Businesses that could help keep the lights on through demand response should be able to access the same kind of subsidies and other financial support as energy companies generating power, the ADE said.

This included through the Government’s capacity market scheme, which awards subsidies to companies that can guarantee they can provide power capacity to help meet peak demand for future winters.

The ADE said that procuring 4GW of demand-side response capacity through the scheme could prevent the “wasteful” construction of 1,300 new standalone diesel generators and save up to £2.3bn by 2035."


Download the ADE report here.

Read the full article on the Telegraph.