The recent agreement on COP21 (2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference) poses significant challenges to the UK energy industry. The traditional focus of energy policy has tended towards generation, and not on demand reductions.
In order to achieve the objectives agreed at COP21, a combination of generation and demand reduction policies is required. Future demand reduction can be achieved through a number of measures; using traditional technologies, insulation, higher efficiency boilers and LED lighting; and increasingly through smarter use of energy and the integration of generation and demand.
The first technology to take this into reality is the mandated roll out of smart metering starting in 2016, but this on its own will not reduce demand. Many other technologies are available, that combine electronic systems with electrical and mechanical products and systems. These smart energy solutions provide significant opportunities for demand reductions, and the integration of renewable and low carbon technologies.
The potential for the use of these technologies is beginning to be understood in DECC, in particular through the smart energy team. There is however little recognition of the business and employment benefits of these technologies being invented, developed and deployed first in the UK.
ESCO is currently developing a plan to begin addressing these issues.
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