Thursday, 28 May 2015

Are we becoming too dependent on industrial consumers to even out demand for us?

I recently visited a cement factory with a hefty 2MW peak electricity demand. Most of their production was done at night, and they wouldn't dream of switching their big motors on between 3 and 8pm in winter.

Because they are such big consumers, they get very carefully calibrated tariffs that encourage them to use electricity only at off peak times - and it's worth their while to do so.

But 2MW is also the peak demand for any 2000 domestic households - and they will use electricity indiscriminately, pushing up the peaks and ignoring the troughs - unless they read my blog!

So a large village or small town can decide to be as environmentally friendly as a big cement factory if they so choose- just time shift those dishwashers, washing machines and tumble driers into the middle of the night - and don't forget to tell your friends!

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