June 13, 2018
Industrial users can reduce their energy bills by up to 10% by participating in demand response programmes, according to the UK's Association for Decentralised Energy (ADE).
With demand-side response, energy users vary the amount of electricity they use at certain times in response to a signal or incentive from their energy supplier. For example, they can power down certain equipment for a while, use on-site generation and/or battery storage technology, and use more power when supply is plentiful.
Businesses that are able to be flexible in their energy use can benefit from price fluctuations in the energy market and receive payments for reducing how much energy they use at times of peak demand or when the capacity of the grid is constrained for technical reasons.
A joint report from ADE and RenewableUK says that UK industry is not yet taking full advantage of the significant cost and carbon savings available from demand response and flexible grid services.
The report, 'Industrial competitiveness in a low carbon world', sets out a new model of industrial energy use in which industrial firms are able to boost their competitiveness while also helping the UK to achieve its decarbonisation targets through active participation in the energy market.
ADE director Dr Tim Rotheray explained how, despite often being presented as being mutually exclusive, there is clear alignment between decarbonisation and industrial competitiveness.
"New business models reveal the sleeping potential for flexibility embedded in industrial processes which can be harnessed without disruption to core activities. By tapping into this potential and creating a more flexible power system, we can create a win-win situation for industry and deliver cost-effective decarbonisation," he said.
"A more flexible power system creates a stable power grid, which can then accommodate more renewable energy to meet our decarbonisation targets at least cost. The industrial energy users providing flexibility also benefit with lower energy bills and increased competitiveness when operating in a decarbonising global economy."
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