Category Archives: Energy News

Smart Energy Start-up Upside Energy Secures £5.5 Million Investment

In its first major round of venture capital financing, Manchester-based Upside Energy attracted £5.5 million in order to grow its team and speed up the commercialisation and deployment of its cloud-based smart-grid platform.

Legal & General Capital, the principal investment arm of Legal & General Group, and SYSTEMIQ, an investment and advisory firm, co-led the investment.

Also providing capital are Modern Energy, Bulldog Innovation Group plus individual investors.

Solution to ease peak-time pressures

Upside Energy has developed a technology that connects and benefits both suppliers and users, while reducing carbon emissions.

While the market for renewable power such as wind and solar is growing, these come from multiple sources and are intermittent. This makes it harder for power stations to generate electricity consistently.

Upside Energy’s platform aggregates the energy stored in everyday connected devices, such as batteries and hot water tanks, to create a virtual energy store that can be drawn on as needed.

For National Grid – Upside Energy’s first customer – this means it can better balance electricity supply and demand from renewable sources.

Customers can also save on their energy costs or earn revenue if they avoid using electricity during peak times.

Funding and support

In addition to providing access to business connections and mentoring, Innovate UK has supported Upside Energy in multiple collaborative research and development projects.

This includes a total grant of £470,000 to develop a pilot for its core service and communication protocol, with partners Sharp Laboratories of Europe, Select Innovations (enLight), Tempus Energy and the University of Manchester.

It was also awarded an SBRI ‘first of a kind’ deployment contract for £43,000 to install home energy storage systems into 400 homes with an existing PV system.

Find out about how we support the energy sector.

Ongoing work

Upside Energy is currently involved in an Innovate UK-funded project.

It is part of a £2.9 million consortium to develop a physical and digital network to integrate systems that will enable the balancing of heating, cooling, electricity, and carbon, via a low-cost approach.

Other collaborators include Cranfield University, London South Bank University, Mixergy, Origen Power and Terra Firma Ground Investigation. ICAX is the lead.

Upside Energy founder Graham Oakes

Upside Energy founder Graham Oakes

Landmark Electricity Link Project For English Channel

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) has issued a comprehensive decision for the IFA2 (Interconnexion France-Angleterre) project under the TEN-E Regulations, after it attained all of the required statutory consents in UK consenting regime.

The IFA2 interconnector is a 1,000mw high voltage direct current (HVDC) link, which will run from Normandy in France to Hampshire in England. The project is being carried out by National Grid IFA2 Ltd and RTE.

IFA2 map

MMO Senior Marine Licensing Manager Matthew Kinmond said:

This is the first comprehensive decision from the MMO under the TEN-E Regulations and the first in the UK for a cross-border and multiple consenting regime interconnector project. It represents a major milestone for the IFA2 project.

Dave Luetchford Head of IFA2 from National Grid said:

Enhancing Great Britain’s energy connection to France will bring a number of benefits, including increasing security of electricity supplies for both countries and providing opportunities for shared use of renewable energy.

Find out more about the IFA2 project

Find out more about TEN-E Regulations

What Is The Green Deal ?

The Green deal was introduced by the department of energy and climate change to help consumers and comapnies reduce their energy consumption through the installation of energy efficiency measures on existing buildings.

The Green Deal plan allows for the installation of energy efficiency measures without any upfront cost.  Instead the costs are collected through the energy bill, and are paid for by the energy savings that are generated from their use

How the Green Deal works can be broken down into 5 simple steps. Please see the flow chart below to understand the processes involved.

For more information read through the NICEIC PAS 2030 Registration Guide.

You can pay for energy-efficient home improvements through savings on your energy bills. Interested? Please find more information below to help.

More details here – 

Subsidy Free Solar Comes To The UK

The UK’s first subsidy-free solar farm will be officially opened today (Tuesday 26 September) by Climate Change Minister Claire Perry.

The 45 acre Clayhill solar farm and energy storage facility near Flitwick in Bedfordshire, built by energy provider Anesco, is made up of over 30,000 solar panels – enough to power 2,500 homes.

The solar farm will be the first in the UK to be built and operated without Government subsidy, following a fall in the cost of solar panels by two thirds since 2010. To date the industry has successfully installed 12GW of solar capacity across the country.

Battery technology also has an important role to play in making renewable energy a viable part of the UK’s energy network by ensuring energy can be captured and stored for use when needed. The Clayhill development features five battery storage units. These help maximise the usable output from renewable power sources such as solar, which generates different amounts of energy depending on the weather.

Claire Perry, Minister for Climate Change and Industry said:

The cost of solar panels and batteries has fallen dramatically over the past few years, and this first subsidy-free development at Clayhill is a significant moment for clean energy in the UK.

Solar panels already provide enough electricity to power 2.7 million homes with 99% of that capacity installed since 2010.

The Government is determined to build on this success and our ambitious Clean Growth Strategy will ensure we continue to lead the world on the transition to a low carbon economy.

The Government expects to see more developers install and connect subsidy-free sites later this year.

Steve Shine OBE, Anesco’s Executive Chairman said:

For the solar industry, Clayhill is a landmark development and paves the way for a sustainable future, where subsidies are no longer needed or relied upon. Importantly, it proves that the Government’s decision to withdraw subsidies doesn’t have to signal the end of solar as a commercially viable technology.

This landmark moment for the clean energy industry comes after the Government set out its plans for a smarter energy system which set out a future in which energy providers will take advantage of new technologies such as battery storage to benefit consumers.

This was followed by a record amount of renewable capacity being secured in the latest contracts for difference auction and new Government measures to accelerate investment in clean growth by building on the UK’s strength in green finance. There was also confirmation from the Prime Minister that dirty coal generation would end by 2025.

Today, National Grid announced that more than half the UK’s electricity came from low carbon sources in the last three months, making it the ‘greenest’ summer on record.

Solar Farm

New Clean Energy Projects Set To Power 3.6 Million Homes

Record amount of renewable capacity secured to power our homes following second contracts for difference auction.

  • Competition drives down the cost for consumers – new offshore wind projects will be delivered as low as £58/MWh from 2022-23
  • Further boost to the UK’s low-carbon supply chain, as part of the government’s ambitious Industrial Strategy and upcoming Clean Growth Plan

Eleven new clean energy projects worth up to £176m per year have been successful in the latest competitive auction for renewable technologies, the government has announced today (Monday 11 September).

The projects, which are set to generate over 3GW of electricity, enough to power 3.6 million homes, demonstrate that the UK continues to be an attractive place to invest in clean energy.

The government is committed to investing in clean technology and driving economic growth as set out in our ambitious Industrial Strategy and upcoming Clean Growth Plan.

The competitive approach is continuing to drive cost reductions in the renewable energy industry – the cost of new offshore wind projects starting to generate electricity from 2022-23 are now 50% lower than the first auction held in 2015 (1). The other successful technologies, Advanced Conversion Technologies and Dedicated Biomass with Combined Heat and Power, also achieved significant savings.

Competition has also driven down the costs for consumers. The capacity delivered in this auction cost up to £528m per year less than it would have in the absence of competition.

Projects are to be delivered across Great Britain from Wales to the Scottish Highlands and the West Midlands from 2021.

Minister for Energy and Industry, Richard Harrington, said:

We’ve placed clean growth at the heart of the Industrial Strategy to unlock opportunities across the country, while cutting carbon emissions.

The offshore wind sector alone will invest £17.5bn in the UK up to 2021 and thousands of new jobs in British businesses will be created by the projects announced today. This government will continue to seize these opportunities as the world moves towards a low carbon future, and will set out ambitious proposals in the upcoming Clean Growth Plan.

This investment will help the UK meet its climate targets while supporting jobs in Britain’s growing renewable industry. The UK has the largest offshore wind capacity in the world and low carbon businesses have a combined turnover of £43 billion, employing 234,000 people.