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Severn Trent sets lofty 2020 demand flexibility targets

The Wanlip sewage treatment facility in Leicester, which has already been supplying demand flexibility to National Grid.

The Wanlip sewage treatment facility in Leicester, which has already been supplying demand flexibility to National Grid.

Water utility Severn Trent has set its sights on developing around 20MW of demand flexibility by 2020, enlisting flexibility provider Open Energi to help with the process.

Open Energi is working on a phased roll-out of demand flexibility utilising its Dynamic Demand product, building on the 1.2MW of flexibility Severn Trent currently offers National Grid.

This has been installed on two sewage treatment plants in Redditch and Leicester, however a further six sites have been identified as part of the first phase of its new roll-out programme.

Works on these sites are expected to be completed by Q1 2018 and in the future Severn Trent said it would be investigating the use of Dynamic Demand across smaller sites and estates within its portfolio.

Open Energi was selected to provide the demand flexibility via an open tender process and Rob Wild, demand side response manager at Severn Trent, said the initiative was part of a plan to minimise the amount of energy the utility uses.

“Open Energi’s tech delivers an income, but it also gives us far greater visibility of how our assets are performing, second-by-second. This insight can help us to optimise our sites for the future - pre-empting maintenance issues, improving resiliency, and thinking more smartly about how we integrate other technologies, such as renewable energy and battery storage,” he said.

Meanwhile, Open Energi is edging closer to the roll-out of its next generation platform, dubbed Dynamic Demand 2.0, which is set to be released next month.

That upgrade will enable Open Energi to optimise distributed energy assets including battery storage, electric vehicles and on-site generation, allowing businesses to ‘stack’ flexibility value streams.

David Hill, commercial director at Open Energi, said last month’s CfD results for offshore wind demonstrated the “urgent need” for greater flexibility in the UK’s power networks.

“Our partnership with Severn Trent can help to deliver this, and we see huge opportunities to drive further long-term savings for the business as we continue to develop our Dynamic Demand platform,” he added.