Flexibility in Great Britain

The Flexibility in Great Britain project analysed the system-level value of deploying flexibility across the heat, transport, industry and power sectors in Great Britain to provide a robust evidence-base on the role and value of flexibility in a net zero system.

Flex GB cover


Findings from this groundbreaking analysis of the future net zero energy system in Great Britain are expected to have profound implications for policymakers, households and the wider energy sector across Great Britain. 

Key findings include:

  • Embedding greater flexibility across the entire energy system will reduce the cost of achieving net zero for all consumers while assuring energy security.
  • Investing in flexibility is a no-regrets decision as it has the potential to deliver material net savings of up to £16.7bn per annum across all scenarios analysed in 2050.
  • A more flexible system will accelerate the benefits of decarbonisation supported by decentralisation and digitalisation.
  • To maximise the benefits of flexibility, households and businesses should play an active role in the development and operation of the country’s future energy system as energy use for transport, heat and appliances becomes more integrated.
  • Policymakers should preserve existing flexibility options and act now to maximise future flexibility, such as by building it into ‘smart’ appliances or building standards.

Flexibility in Great Britain report

Publication date: May 2021

The analysis was led by the Carbon Trust and researchers from Imperial College London, and was supported by a cross-sector group comprising: Bryt Energy, EDF, Greater London Authority, IGEM, Kiwi Power, Low Carbon Contracts Company, SBM Offshore, SP Energy Networks, Statera Energy, Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN), UK Power Networks and Western Power Distribution. 

BEIS, Ofgem, the Climate Change Committee, Innovate UK, National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) and National Grid ESO were also consulted.

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