Callum Rae, EnergyREV Researcher, Heriot-Watt University
Since the summer of 2020, EnergyREV has been engaging with a number of in-depth case studies of existing Smart Local Energy Systems (SLES) from around the UK. These case studies are intended to provide a detailed, real-world understanding of the projects and people which make up a SLES and, in particular, the challenges and barriers that are experienced by those involved during the development and operation.
In the nine months since data collection began, we have engaged with key stakeholders at three case study locations:
- Fintry in Stirlingshire;
- Project ERIC in Oxford;
- Mull ACCESS project.
This case studies analysis builds upon previous work on identifying key technical barriers and our review of local energy projects in the UK. We have also been working on an interactive map of local energy projects in the UK – something we hope will be available soon, so watch this space! Preparations are underway for our fourth SLES case study as we seek to diversify our collection of case studies and deepen our understanding of SLES.
Nine months into the data collection process, we have enjoyed insightful discussions with a diverse group of stakeholders from across the sector, including industry, local development trusts, technology providers, utilities, local authorities, and academia to name just a few. With such a rich and varied source of knowledge and experience, it is exciting to see insights begin to emerge and we look forward to sharing these with you later in the year.