Jan 2012
Electricity Distribution
Ashton Hayes Smart Village
Jan 2012
Oct 2013
SP Energy Networks
SP Energy Networks Innovation
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LCN Fund Tier 1
Low Carbon Generation
Three years ago Ashton Hayes, with the backing of the Parish Council, launched their Going Carbon Neutral project. This rural community of 1,000 inhabitants outside Chester declared an ambitious aim to become England’s first carbon neutral village.

Since the project’s inception the village has reduced its carbon emissions by 20% through a raft of predominantly simple measures such as the use of low energy light bulbs, turning down heating thermostats, recycling, composting, taking trains instead of driving and reducing travel by air.

In 2009 the village applied for a DECC grant to install micro generation and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) in the village to further reduce their carbon footprint. Scottish Power Energy Networks and EA Technology under the Innovation Funding Incentive have carried out a feasibility study into the impact of connecting micro generation in terms of voltage, losses and power flows analysis. The outcome of the study can be utilised to best advise on the connection of the renewable micro generation, as well as working with the community to further reduce the villages carbon footprint.

The objectives of the Smart Village Project are on technical innovation and delivery of information to the community, aimed at achieving a sustained reduction in carbon emissions:

  • Facilitate connection of various micro generation technologies (wind, PV and CHP) and potentially Electric Vehicle (EV) charging points on the Low Voltage (LV) network and 11kV feeders.

  • Engagement with the village and community to assist in the reduction and optimisation of total energy consumption to reduce carbon footprint.

  • To improve the accuracy and granularity of total electricity consumption measurement by installing additional metering on the network at secondary sub station feeder level and at renewable energy sources providing measurement of the gross generation embedded within the community.

  • Introduce innovative and new techniques to introduce Demand Side Management capabilities aimed at assisting change in energy use related behaviours in residential homes and public properties.