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I was asked to give a bit of insight on Delta-ee’s research into commercial demand side response (DSR) customers and the barriers and benefits that they face. After sharing some tasters, the roundtable discussions from National Grid’s conference, ‘Power Responsive’, kicked off. In my last blog I gave my key highlights and an overview of the Power Responsive launch event and conference. To follow up I wanted to share the 5 key ways to engage UK customers in DSR that came out of the roundtable discussions.
The roundtable delegates were all in agreement that the benefits for customers of being involved with DSR are financial gains - “It’s all about the bottom line”. The revenue generated from DSR is the pinnacle motivation and benefit that we have found in our research with commercial customers. “Being seen as green” and meeting CSR objectives was also discussed as a ‘nice to have’. However, one aggregator indicated that they had tried to offer carbon credits and a number of other similar schemes and found that their customers were just not interested.
Demand side response (DSR) is moving into the limelight, after sitting in the shadows over recent years. Here at Delta-ee, we are getting more and more involved in DSR as a key research topic that our clients are asking us for help with. DSR is also rising up the agenda within National Grid, as we found out when we were invited to attend and facilitate roundtable discussions at National Grid's conference and launch of ‘Power Responsive’ in London on 18th June – a welcome and concerted effort at energising DSR in the UK. The National Grid has ambitious targets for DSR, wanting to see it meeting a much bigger chunk of the capacity that National Grid requires to avoid around £9 billion worth of investments. Today, DSR accounts for around 2GW of flexibility for the UK eletricity grid; the technical potential is estimated to be in excess of 10GW.
The drivers for National Grid’s campaign are clear. With increasing deployment of large scale renewables (wind, solar and hydro), and fossil fuel generation plants coming offline, the common solution is DSR. DSR provides a cost effective way to manage these ever pressing issues and other future challenges such as projected future growth in the electrification of heating (e.g. gas boilers to heat pumps) and transport.
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