Electron brings together energy industry heavyweights to design the future of energy flexibility
Consortium established including Baringa, EDF Energy, Flexitricity, Kiwi Power, Northern Powergrid, Open Energi, Shell, Statkraft, UK Power Networks and Electron
Focus will be to identify how best to commercialise the decentralised flexibility trading platform developed with the benefit of a BEIS grant and supported by Siemens and National Grid
Electron announced today that it has established a consortium with 9 further key energy industry players to co-develop a commercialisation model and the initial product set for the award-winning flexibility trading platform. This follows the announcement in September last year that Electron received BEIS funding to continue development work of the trading platform, supported by National Grid and Siemens.
Baringa, EDF Energy, Flexitricity, KiWi Power, Northern Powergrid, Open Energi, Shell, Statkraft and UK Power Networks have teamed up with Electron, a leading energy blockchain company, to tackle the challenge of energy flexibility and to co-design a vision for the future of UK energy.
The system operator, government and industry experts have all highlighted flexibility as one of the key solutions to address the significant challenge of ensuring cheap, clean and reliable energy. They have set bold targets for a whole system review and for increased flexibility uptake (National Grid, System Needs and Product Strategy, 2017; BEIS & Ofgem, Smart Systems and Flexibility Plan, 2017).
Electron believes that a large, liquid and collaborative flexibility market is crucial for achieving these targets, and ensuring the ongoing decarbonisation, digitisation, democratisation and decentralisation of the energy market.
The objectives of the consortium are threefold:
Incorporate the specialist knowledge and know-how of a diverse collection of stakeholders
Develop the framework for a fit-for-purpose platform for the rapidly evolving electricity system
Enable co-ordinated and collaborative trading of balancing and other grid quality products
Paul Ellis, CEO and co-founder at Electron, comments: “We are delighted to have established a forum for industry participants to work together to make transactive flexibility something that is real and relevant. By working together, we recognise the current system needs to be changed and we are designing a system for present and future market participants.”
Nick Tallantyre, Partner at Baringa said “As our electricity system becomes increasingly decentralised, it is vital that we find more effective and more transparent mechanisms for market participants to offer and trade flexible assets. Blockchain represents an innovative, new framework on which such a flexibility market could be created and we are excited to work with the industry to design such a solution”
Chris Regan, Head of Business Development at EDF Energy said, “Our approach for customers is about extracting the maximum value for every kW of their flexibility. This lowers the overall cost of balancing the systems, thus reducing the overall costs to UK consumers. We are excited to be at the centre of this new paradigm, partnering new entrants and setting the direction of a decentralised flexibility market.”
Flexitricity’s Founder & Chief Strategy Officer, Alastair Martin, said “Flexitricity’s job is to take energy users’ flexibility to market, and monetise it for them. This project is an imaginative new market that could tie together several different value streams, and open up some new ones. We’re excited to be involved.”
Yoav Zingher, KiWi Power’s CEO and Founder, said “Open and transparent markets are of vital importance to secure the most efficient, flexible future for electricity markets. KiWi Power has a strong track record over the past decade of delivering the best results for our clients in existing markets and will use this experience to guide the development of this new dynamic marketplace. As disruptive pioneers in the electricity industry we are excited to be part of a leading project to bring markets for flexibility forward into the 21st century.”
Jim Cardwell, Northern Powergrid’s Head of Trading and Innovation, said: “The development of the blockchain technology is seeking to provide the commercial infrastructure to support a wide variety of future market models for energy and network services. This collaboration complements our wider portfolio of activity outlining our transition to the new role of distribution system operator and investment in enabling grid technology that delivers value for our customers.”
Sebastian Blake, Commercial Manager at Open Energi, said “The energy industry is in the midst of a paradigm shift that is revolutionising how electricity is supplied and managed while accelerating the UK’s transition to a low carbon economy. Secure and transparent marketplaces for flexibility are fundamental to this transition, and will remove market barriers, empower consumers, and finally level the playing field between large power plants and smart, distributed on-site capacity.”
Dale Geach, Technology and Innovation Manager at Siemens said, “Seeking to solve the inherent issues of collaborative trading between multiple customers will unlock real value for stakeholders in the energy system and facilitate a much needed and efficient route to market for Distributed Energy Resources offering Demand Side Response services. We are excited to be supporting this project and exploring the potential impacts and benefits of decentralised electricity flexibility markets.”
Brian Lonn, Downstream Development Manager at Statkraft, said, “As Europe’s largest generator and marketer of renewable energies Statkraft is a major buyer and seller of flexibility. To us the prospect of a new and efficient marketplace for flexibility has a natural appeal.”
Sotiris Georgiopoulos, Head of Smart Grid Development at UK Power Networks said: “We see flexibility as key to delivering value for customers in the future energy system. Harnessing energy flexibility through technology will enable us to increase participation in the rapidly-evolving electricity market”.
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Electron is a London-based tech company harnessing blockchain to design new platforms and services for a decarbonising, digitising, decentralising and democratising energy sector. Recognising the potential for these new technologies to transform the shared virtual infrastructure of the grid, Electron is taking a top down, collaborative approach to platform development and working with various key stakeholders in the energy industry.
For more information, please visit www.electron.org.uk
Baringa Partners is an independent, specialist business and technology consultancy. We help businesses run more effectively, navigate industry shifts and reach new markets. We use our industry insights, ideas and pragmatism to help each client improve their business and deliver on key elements of their strategy.
About EDF Energy:
EDF Energy is the UK’s largest producer of low-carbon electricity, meeting around one-fifth of the country’s demand and supplying millions of customers and businesses with electricity and gas.
It generates electricity with eight nuclear power stations, more than 30 wind farms, one gas and two coal power stations, as well as with combined heat and power plants.
EDF Energy is leading the UK's nuclear renaissance with the construction of a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point C. This will provide low carbon electricity to meet 7% of UK demand. The project is already making a positive impact on the local and national economy, British industry, as well as boosting skills and education. EDF Energy also invests in a range of low carbon technologies including renewables and battery storage. It is applying research and development expertise to improve the performance of existing generation and developing the potential of new technologies.
The company provides gas and electricity for more than 5 million customer accounts and is the biggest supplier of electricity by volume in Great Britain and the largest supplier to British businesses. It offers innovative energy systems for commercial customers and digital innovation for customers at home. EDF Energy has also launched its own innovation accelerator, Blue Lab, which focuses on making customers’ lives easier.
The Better Plan is EDF Energy's framework for being a sustainable and responsible energy business and is an integral part of EDF's 2030 vision to be the efficient, responsible electricity company, and champion of low-carbon growth. The Better Plan is underpinned by comprehensive environmental and social programmes which have been recognised by a wide range of organisations.
EDF Energy is part of EDF Group, the world’s biggest electricity generator. In the UK, the company employs around 13,000 people at locations across England and Scotland.
To find out more about the UK's energy challenges visit: www.edfenergy.com/energyfuture/
Flexitricity created and now operates the first, largest and most advanced demand-response portfolio in GB. They bring revenue to British businesses, increase asset reliability, reduce national CO2 emissions and help to secure energy supplies.
They pioneered open-market aggregated demand-side services for electricity system balancing. Flexitricity firsts include aggregated STOR and FCDM; Footroom and demand turn-up; post-fault despatch for distribution networks; and demand-side smart frequency control (SFC).
About KiWi Power
KiWi Power is the UK’s leading demand response aggregator and has been a key player in the UK and internationally since 2009.
Combining proprietary hardware and software, KiWi Power’s experienced team delivers significant commercial returns and sustainability benefits to large consumers of electricity, utilities and grid operators.
We are passionate about driving innovation in technology to create efficiencies, generate commercial opportunities and promote a green agenda. We work confidently with policy makers and system and network operators, navigating the energy landscape to provide clients robust and best in class technology and hardware.
Demand response is a unique and powerful application using technology to reduce electricity consumption at peak times across industrial and commercial sites. This creates a greener, more cost- effective grid; reduces the need for inefficient backup power stations and provides vital balancing requirements and security of supply to system operators and end user sites.
KiWi Power’s innovative approach is leading the way in evolving the UK demand response market as well as influencing the design, build and operation of demand response programmes around the world.
About Northern Powergrid:
Northern Powergrid is the electricity network operator responsible for delivering power safely and reliably to 8 million customers across 3.9 million homes and businesses in the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire. Its network consists of more than 63,000 substations and 60,000 miles of overhead power lines and underground cables, spanning some 9,650 square miles.
About Open Energi:
Open Energi is using advanced technology and data-driven insight to radically reduce the cost of delivering and consuming power. The company’s Dynamic Demand 2.0 platform connects, aggregates and optimises distributed energy assets in real-time, maximising value for end users and providing invisible demand flexibility to create a more sustainable energy system. Since 2011, Open Energi has connected over 3,500 assets at over 400 sites UK-wide, delivering innovative solutions that put businesses in control of how, when and from where they consume electricity.
About Shell International (for Shell New Energies)
Shell International has joined the consortium on behalf of Shell’s New Energies business which was created in 2016. New Energies focuses on two main areas: new fuels for transport, such as advanced biofuels and hydrogen; and power, which includes low- carbon sources such as wind and solar, as well as natural gas. Alongside our two focus areas, we’re exploring how digital technologies can best support our approach and help improve customers’ lives. See www.shell.com/about-us/what-we-do/new-energies.html
Siemens AG (Berlin and Munich) is a global technology powerhouse that has stood for engineering excellence, innovation, quality, reliability and internationality for 170 years. The company is active in more than 200 countries, focusing on the areas of electrification, automation and digitalization. One of the world’s largest producers of energy-efficient, resource-saving technologies, Siemens is a leading supplier of efficient power generation and power transmission solutions and a pioneer in infrastructure solutions as well as automation, drive and software solutions for industry. The company is also a leading provider of medical imaging equipment – such as computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging systems – and a leader in laboratory diagnostics as well as clinical IT. In fiscal 2016, which ended on September 30, 2016, Siemens generated revenue of €79.6 billion and net income of €5.6 billion. At the end of September 2016, the company had around 351,000 employees worldwide. Further information is available on the Internet at www.siemens.com.
Statkraft is a leading company in hydropower internationally and Europe’s largest generator of renewable energy. The Group produces hydropower, wind power, solar power, gas-fired power and supplies district heating. Statkraft is a global company in energy market operations. Statkraft has 3800 employees in 16 countries. In the UK Statkraft is a leading provider of Power Purchase Agreements for renewable and flexible generators and battery storage facilities.
About UK Power Networks:
UK Power Networks is the country’s biggest electricity distributor, making sure the lights stay on for more than eight million homes and businesses across London, the South East and the East of England.
Network operators aren’t the same as energy suppliers; network operators manage local power lines and substations, while energy suppliers sell the electricity that runs through the power lines.
UK Power Networks is the first electricity distributor to be named in the Sunday Times’ Top 30 Best Companies to Work For, and made industry history by becoming first company to win Utility of the Year two years running (2015 and 2016, also 2012).
The company invests more than £500 million in its electricity networks every year, offers extra help to vulnerable customers at times of need, and is undertaking trials to ensure that electricity networks support the transition to a low carbon future. It also moves cables and connects new electricity supplies. If you have a power cut ring 105, see www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk or tweet us @UKPNnews