Worth its weight in carbon

Posted on Jan 2, 2019
Worth its weight in carbon

Here’s more news from our trial of a liberated market for electrical power on the island of Iona, with our partner Scene. Over the past quarter-year, our Real Time Trading Platform has been facilitating energy trading, in real time, for thirty homes. Each of them has had a smart agent negotiating for it within the trading platform, so every purchase of electricity in the market has been based not on the artificial price that some central controller chooses, but on the simple and natural question “how much will anybody pay?”. 

We’ve posted elsewhere about the potential financial benefits that the island’s consumers and PV generators have negotiated in this radically new style of energy market.  

Today we have some news about the sustainable carbon emission impact of what we’re doing.  Thus far, the business case for building wind turbines in the UK has depended perilously on government subsidies, either through a Contract for Difference guarantee of energy price or through fixed price uplift from a Feed in Tariff. We look forward to the day when our local electricity market will provide local prices that justify wind turbine construction without state aid.  

We’ve simulated the output of a 100 kW wind turbine (using data from a turbine on a nearby island) and found that even the local market of the tiny island of Iona would consume enough wind energy to save 56 tonnes of carbon in a year: it would be more than worth its weight in carbon.  

The project has been awarded co-funding by Innovate UK (IUK), part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by UK government. IUK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas, including those from the UK’s world-class research base.  

Swanbarton is working with power companies, energy suppliers and storage manufacturers to bring its patented technology for real-time local energy trading from Iona to the world.