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  • Saving the national grid
  • whatgoesup
    Full Member

    I think that a bit of all the above suggestions is likely the way forwards – it’s not a one-solution problem. e.g. manage peak demand as much as is feasible (dishwashers etc run at off-peak times via financial incentives ), home batteries to help locally smooth use, home solar panels (which work best with batteries), EV’s as part of the home battery puzzle (maybe having an EV doesn’t mean that there is no need for a home battery as the car isn’t there plugged in 24/7, but maybe that means the home battery can be quite a bit smaller sized).

    pictonroad
    Full Member

    @dirtyrider

    people really think like this?

    Absolutely. There’s a really simple app you can use called, ‘when to plug in’. It forecasts the likely renewables contribution to the grid so you can plan your heavy usage better to reduce the carbon impact. It’s so easy to plan when to put the washing on and charge the car, 24hrs delay can make a huge difference.

    I’m sure everyone does this already in the summer, you put the washing machine on when it’s a good ‘drying day’, this is just the grid equivalent really.

    Back to the original topic – If everyone had smart meters this concept could be hugely successful in reducing the carbon impact of electrical generation. Dynamic unit pricing for the week ahead using the weather forecast could encourage users to plug in heavy use appliances when the grid is most efficient. Obviously this won’t work all the time but it would certainly be enough to make a serious difference. The ‘mean’ unit price could be kept the same for users not on smart meters or vulnerable/unwilling users.

    I’m sure this kind of gimmick is a pre-cursor to mass dynamic pricing, it makes perfect sense.

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    But that’s not how energy is sold to the grid, most of it is in futures so all that coal power is already pre-sold along with gas and nuclear so has to be generated or the supplier has to buy it at higher day rates. I have no idea how wind and solar is sold, mostly spot trading I’d imagine but just because a load of wind is blowing or it’s exceptionally sunny one day it doesn’t mean all the thermal units have shut down.

    v8ninety
    Full Member

    Some of the posts on this thread absolutely reek of middle class privilege. Wow.

    ‘Punish people’ for using electricity (that they are already paying stupid money for) instead of incentivise change? FFS.

    My lads and I participated in the scene via octopus; we don’t stand to gain greatly as we are already fairly energy conscious and the bills are killing us, but we delayed using the electric cooker for an hour. We actually quite inconvenient and the boys were hungry but we felt like we were doing our bit. Nice to know some people thought I should be penalised for feeding my children at an ‘inappropriate’ time.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    people really think like this?

    Not only think like that, we act like that. Washing machines and dishwashers set to come on during periods where the grid has a high proportion of wind generated supply. Why whack on these machines when families are cooking their evening meals and gas and coal burning is high to supply their needs? The weird thing to me is that people aren’t thinking like this. Have people not been watching the news? Is climate change not a big enough priority for people yet? Rhetorical question… we need variable or dynamic pricing if we’re to encourage people to spread energy demand and reduce the use of gas and coal burning to meet peak demand.

    aberdeenlune
    Free Member

    As far as I know it doesn’t have to be generated. The system is run on a most efficient/cost per unit basis. So the most expensive power stations are only run when absolutely required. I remember the old Inverkip oil fired power station. Not sure it was ever ran on the grid in anger. Was always the most expensive power station available. A back up that was never used.

    If demand could be smoothed out a bit then it’s a win win for the environment and costs. Maybe not great for the coal power stations though.

    intheborders
    Free Member

    people who routinely use excess power at inappropriate times of day.

    “excess power at inappropriate times” – how the **** would any of us actually know?

    I’m old enough to remember when it was the Govts job to ‘keep the lights on’.
    Yet another task the Tories have shown themselves to be incompetent at.

    TheBrick
    Free Member

    Some of the posts on this thread absolutely reek of middle class privilege. Wow.

    Welcome to STW the home of the myopic

    kelvin
    Full Member

    It’s not myopic to try and spread energy use. Quite the opposite. And don’t assume those doing so aren’t also trying to feed their families and find a way to stretch every penny to try and pay bills. It’s not the 20th Century any more, let’s stop painting concerns about climate change as being something only for the well off… we all need to find ways, especially zero cost ways, of finding little things we can do to help with a big problem. Not setting off your washing machine, if you have one, at peak times is not a big sacrifice, and doesn’t add at all to the heavy costs many of us are dealing with. Cooking is a lot harder to time shift, for obvious reasons… I haven’t even tried.

    intheborders
    Free Member

    Absolutely. There’s a really simple app you can use called, ‘when to plug in’. It forecasts the likely renewables contribution to the grid so you can plan your heavy usage better to reduce the carbon impact. It’s so easy to plan when to put the washing on and charge the car, 24hrs delay can make a huge difference.

    I’m sure everyone does this already in the summer, you put the washing machine on when it’s a good ‘drying day’, this is just the grid equivalent really.

    You actually put doing the washing off for a day?

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Putting of the washing? Often a few days in our case if there’s a cold snap or other factors that mean gas and coal burning is high. But just delaying for an hour or so can avoid periods of peak demand.

    As for the dishwasher (yes, owning one is absolutely a privilege), they have delay start for a reason… delay it to come on outside peak times.

    pictonroad
    Full Member

    Yes, I don’t have much/any money to spare. If it’s going to be raining one day and sunny for the next three I’ll stockpile it and do three loads.

    I don’t feel entitled to make decisions irrespective of the financial or environmental impact.

    I’m not sure if I should be feeling guilty for thinking like this, it seems obvious, it’s how I grew up.

    EDIT – I haven’t once stated anyone should be punished, quite the opposite, people should be incentivised.

    footflaps
    Full Member

    It’s not myopic to try and spread energy use. Quite the opposite.

    +1

    I’m old enough to remember when it was the Govts job to ‘keep the lights on’.

    That was before global warming, now ‘keeping the lights on’ is also ‘boiling the frog alive’.

    spooky_b329
    Full Member

    You actually put doing the washing off for a day?

    Doesn’t everyone?! I’ll always do washing when I can hang it out on the line, doing it when it’s forecast to rain or generally damp means having to use the tumble dryer or dehumidifier so that only happens when the weather is consistently shit.

    trail_rat
    Free Member

    You actually put doing the washing off for a day?

    Even before I had solar we would even more so if a braw drying day was forecast. Logical

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    I remember the old Inverkip oil fired power station. Not sure it was ever ran on the grid in anger.

    It was during the miners strike, old boy I worked with was an operator there before Hunterston.

    As for the dishwasher (yes, owning one is absolutely a privilege), they have delay start for a reason… delay it to come on outside peak times.

    Oh shit now you’ve done it, everyone will be here to tell you how you’re going to incinerate everyone you know and love. That said, my dishwasher is about 20 years old, doesn’t have delay start and the clockwork timer occasionally flakes out so we can’t leave it.

    a braw drying day…

    …doesn’t exist between September and April here.

    TheBrick
    Free Member

    It’s not myopic to try and spread energy use. Quite the opposite. And don’t assume those doing so aren’t also trying to feed their families and find a way to stretch every penny to try and pay bills

    I never said it was. It’s the opinion that people can shift around their major energy use jus because you can. It’s myopic to assume that, because one person can do something then all others can or that they are not already doing washing machine runs out of peak time etc and that their major use period syncing with many others major use period is not movable. That is what is myopic about many of the comments in this thread. Being unable to see that what works for one does not work for many for lots of different individual reasons. This is a general trend on this forum.

    footflaps
    Full Member

    I never said it was. It’s the opinion that people can shift around their major energy use jus because you can.

    They probably could, they don’t have the time or the inclination to do so – or haven’t even considered it a possibility. Worrying about peak loading on the nation grid is going to be pretty low down on most peoples priority lists.

    v8ninety
    Full Member

    @pictonroad

    Would be fairer to penalise them for heavy consumption rather than reward them (with other consumers’ money)

    was the post suggesting punishment. Which is a bit weird, to be honest. (It would also be exactly the same thing as is happening really, just with a different spin on it. If you choose not to participate, you are ‘penalised’ by not receiving a small discount.

    Odd that the posters mind would go to penalty rather than incentive, but hey ho.

    footflaps
    Full Member

    It just says ‘Calculating’ when I look at our account, but…

    More than £1m was paid to energy customers with Octopus Energy on Tuesday as part of a power saving scheme.

    The energy supplier said more than 400,000 customers took part by reducing their electricity use between 4.30pm and 6pm.

    The average customer was paid £2.50 in points for reducing their usage by an average of 60%. The top 5% were paid £15 in points. The Octopus deal can see the points turned into cash, “prizes” or donated to a fund for customers in need.

    The total amount of energy saved was about 250MWh (megawatt hours) nationwide, the same as the city of Liverpool going off grid for an hour, PA Media said.

    https://www.theguardian.com/money/2023/jan/25/1m-paid-to-octopus-energy-customers-as-part-of-power-saving-scheme

    IdleJon
    Full Member

    You actually put doing the washing off for a day?

    Doesn’t everyone?! I’ll always do washing when I can hang it out on the line, doing it when it’s forecast to rain or generally damp means having to use the tumble dryer or dehumidifier so that only happens when the weather is consistently shit.

    a braw drying day…

    …doesn’t exist between September and April here.

    Yeah, the defence of waiting for a good drying day are probably being typed by people who never do the washing. Even a sunny, windy day at this time of year barely dries anything. I washed a load of towels last week – nice sunny, draughty day in tropical south Wales. I brought them back in again about 12 hours later the tiniest bit drier. They were dried in the tumble. The radiators are constantly covered with clothes here.

    matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    My next house, ideally a self build, will have:
    – a covered veranda with lines to hang clothes year around.
    – an insulated laundry room with hanging racks all over and a trombe wall with dehumidifier.

    I added a trombe wall to a 18×18 shed my old outdoor centre used as a drying room – just painted the wood black, added a glazed pane which was recycled 6′ high shop front glass, drilled a series of holes at top and bottom with some planks of wood to close them in the winter. My word it kicked in some heat when the sun even vaguely showed signs of coming out…

Viewing 22 posts - 41 through 62 (of 62 total)

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