- Rose Hill ‘Solar Saver Trial’ launches
The launch of the ‘Solar Saver trial’ gets off to a great start with 18 residents signed up to save money on their energy bills by shifting when they use electricity.
The Solar Saver Trial is one part of the Rose Hill Smart and Fair Neighbourhood (SFN) trial looking at how flexibility services can help the neighbourhood progress towards their goal of becoming a net-zero carbon estate in a way that’s fair and equitable. You can read more about the overarching SFN trial here.
The Solar Saver project is inviting residents of the new build flats in Rose Hill to sign up for the opportunity to save money on their energy bills by ‘flexing’ their use of energy. For example, using their washing machine or other domestic appliances at certain times to take advantage of better pricing for electricity at different times of day.
This shifting of electricity use, turning up or down how much energy we use at certain times, is an important way of freeing up capacity on the electricity grid. A grid that will run into issues as people look to plug in more electric vehicles and electric heating systems. This shifting of energy use makes for much more efficient use of our existing system and can benefit people, e.g., through cost savings.
In this trial, we also hope to find out what could motivate people to take part in that future energy system, such as financial incentives or carbon savings, and what the barriers are to taking part.
What is the Solar Saver offer?
The new-build flats in Rose Hill have solar panels on the roofs, generating clean electricity when the sun shines. This trial is looking at how people living in the flats can benefit from these solar panels, even though they don’t own them. How can they get access to cheaper electricity at those times when solar panels are generating the most energy? We hope to learn from this trial if, and how, residents of similar flats could benefit from cheaper, low carbon electricity from solar panels.
How does it work?
The Solar Saver is a ‘time of use’ energy offer. It offers electricity at a cheaper rate at certain times, for example, when the solar panels on the roof are generating power.
Before we can offer residents this energy offer, we need to understand more about energy use patterns in the flats. So, for the first six months of the trial, we’ll monitor energy use data. Then after six months, residents will switch to the ‘time of use’ offer and we’ll let residents know when the best times are to use electricity to make the most savings on their energy bills.
We’ve had a fantastic response to the trial so far, with 18 residents signed up to take part. There’s still time to sign up for the trial, so if you know someone who lives in the new flats on Carole’s Way, Ashurst Way, Desborough Crescent, or the Oval, please send them the details of the trial (here).
Who is running the trial?
This trial is managed by LEO partners Low Carbon Hub and Oxford City Council. It is supported by Oxford City Housing Limited and local low carbon community group Rose Hill and Iffley Low Carbon.
We look forward to sharing what we learn about how residents can benefit from shifting their energy use.
Find out more about the rest of the Rose Hill Smart and Fair Neighbourhood Trial.