Plans unveiled for largest smart city-wide energy system in the UK

Peterborough is set for the largest smart city-wide energy system in the UK, with the £2mn scheme aiming to cut energy bills and provide green heat, electricity and transport.

The Peterborough Integrated Renewables Infrastructure (PIRI) project, led by Peterborough City Council, will combine a next generation heat network, electricity network and electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure under one scheme. By bringing together energy generation, demand and storage, the project will be able to unlock efficiencies that are not current deliverable under current energy systems. It is expected to be able to serve as a blueprint for other urban locations across the UK.

It has been funded in part by the UK Research and Innovation “Prospering from the Energy Revolution” challenge, while significant private sector investment has also been secured. The project partnership includes SSE Enterprise, Element Energy, Cranfield University, Smarter Grid Solutions and Sweco UK.

Nathan Sanders, Managing Director of SSE Enterprise Distributed Energy, said: “PIRI is an exciting project for us to be investing in. We hope it will demonstrate the potential of smart cities to drive local decarbonization in a commercially viable manner. It takes a ‘whole systems approach’ to energy one step further by integrating all socio-technical elements into one solution that can help councils hit their net zero targets. We are proud to work with leading partners and an enlightened council leadership to enhance the lives of UK citizens.”

Renewable Energy Magazine