Energy security and cost concerns are highlighted as key barriers for UK industry to realise the benefits of decentralised energy, according to a report launched by Aggreko.
Entitled ‘Bridging the Energy Gap,’ the new report is the result of 200 key energy decision-makers across industry offering their views on decentralised energy in the UK. It finds that energy security remains a major or significant concern for most respondents (82%), while reducing energy consumption is viewed as a medium or high priority for the vast majority (94%) of correspondents.
With energy prices continuing to rise over the last five years, knowledge over what interim and affordable energy solutions are currently available is still required. Aggreko’s report acknowledges that finding the right long-term solution while meeting business short-term needs around energy security and production continuity can be challenging. It points out that many energy users across industry are now finding themselves caught between this desire to reduce their costs and environmental impact, while also navigating the technical and financial issues these solutions must solve.
Britain went without coal generated electricity for a week for the first time since 1882, in a precursor of the UK government’s commitment to phase out coal-fired power by 2025. Alternative energy solutions need to make up this shortfall, yet any coal replacement must be affordable and secure, balancing long-term sustainability with short-term financial viability.
According to Aggreko’s report, decentralised energy solutions such as solar power, CHP systems, or wind power, may offer the answer, however, a potential barrier to its adoption has been the high investment costs associated with purchasing a system. Aggreko believes hire can be a bridging solution between current reliance on the grid and a future where the majority of electricity is generated on-site.
Aggreko’s managing director – Northern Europe, Chris Rason comments, “Decentralised energy solutions offer a tantalising glimpse of a future where companies can generate their own energy, adhere to their sustainability targets and sell their surplus back to the grid. Though this technology already exists, cost is a significant barrier to its implementation. We hope that by providing a long-term hire solution, we can provide a bridging gap between current overreliance on the national grid, and a future of secure power generated on-site.”
The report ‘Bridging The Energy Gap’ s available here.