Government publishes environmental 'dynamic demand control' report
The Government’s environmental policy has put reducing CO2 emissions at the top of the agenda for many companies.
In moves that affect domestic appliance designers, the Government has now published its ‘dynamic demand control’ (DDC) report.
The DDC report claims that the technology could reduce annual CO2 emissions by two million tonnes when fully integrated across the network.
This is the equivalent of taking over 665,000 cars off the road.
Currently, rapid demand surges on the national grid are largely handled by ‘spinning reserve’ – operating power stations at under 100 per cent capacity so that they can be turned up at a moment’s notice.
The scheme works, but reserve generators run inefficiently.
Spinning reserve cuts in automatically in response to dips in the normal 50Hz [+/-] 0.2Hz mains frequency, which occur during demand surges.
Dynamic demand requires thermostatically-controlled appliances, including refrigerators, immersion heaters, air conditioners and washing machines, to cut demand by automatically altering their operating point temporarily in response to the same signal.
The report calls for a trial of 400 DDC-enabled cold appliances in either 2008 or 2009, alongside a stakeholder consultation.
“Depending on the outcomes of the field trial and other activities, DDC appliances are to be promoted to manufacturers in 2009 for initial adoption in 2010 or soon after,” said a spokeswoman for the Government’s Market Transformation Programme (MTP), which is funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
“Applications are to include commercial refrigeration, air conditioning and other appliances, both domestic and commercial.”
Simon Leach of Intertek has been researching DDC for DEFRA. “It is not going to save the planet on its own, but it is a tool in the toolbox – particularly as the UK has an island grid,” he said.
This is all part of the UK’s response to the European Energy using Products (EuP) Directive.
EuP, which came into force in the UK in August, mandates minimum energy efficiency limits in various electrical appliances.