Revenue and complexity limiting demand-side response but price spikes may drive uptake


Many businesses see the demand-response market as too complex and think higher revenues or incentives are required to increase uptake, according to a new survey. However, others suggest that security of supply issues and higher peak prices will drive market participation.

Around 160 end users have so far taken The Energyst’s demand-side response (DSR) survey. Around half represent businesses in the industrial and commercial sector and around a quarter of respondents work in the public sector, with the remainder coming from manufacturing, finance, food and drink and retail sectors.

Three quarters of respondents do not participate in demand-side response schemes, many citing complexity (21%), revenue uncertainty and a lack of financial incentives (20%) as key barriers for their organisations. However, around 15% of respondents believe that tightening supply margins and higher peak power prices will drive uptake.

Of respondents that participate in DSR, 71% turn on stand-by generators or switch to onsite generation. Around 60% said they also decrease consumption and around 27% said they increase consumption. For the vast majority (83%), generating income from their assets is the main motivator.

Almost two thirds of respondents (60%) said their facilities house some form of on-site generation, with 84% stating that they would be interested in earning revenue from DSR provision if it did not affect their operations.

The survey remains open for another two weeks. We would appreciate readers’ views on the demand-response market in order to provide as broad a sample as possible. Please take 5 minutes to complete the survey here.

The survey will be incorporated into a new demand-side response report to be published in September at our DSR conference. There are a few free conference tickets remaining for businesses that can provide balancing services. Conference speakers include representatives from National Grid, the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial strategy, major industrial and commercial firms, battery storage developers and respected consultants. Click here to register.

The data used for this article is taken from a live survey with figures in the final report subject to change as a result.

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