Demand response programs pay participants for flexibility in using power from the grid
Demand response is a key element in a flexible solution to volatility in power generation as use of renewable sources increases
Published on Wednesday, 10 June 2020
If flexibility is the watchword in the new world of renewable energy sources and decarbonization of the global economy, then demand response is a key element, the factor that will make the transition to a greener future work.
While electrical power is volatile because it cannot be stored, the amount generated also has to match demand. The increasing importance of renewables in the energy mix has boosted the variability of supply, an issue that is only going to become more pronounced. Many countries have some form of 100% renewable target and some are far more ambitious -- Germany, for example, is aiming to get at least 80% of power from renewables by 2050, while Sweden and Spain are targeting 100% by 2040 and 2050 respectively.
Flexibility of course has a price and demand response is the way that companies can monetize their ability to vary consumption of electricity from the grid when asked to do so. Demand response programs offer companies substantial payments for being on call to reduce non-essential energy use when the grid needs support. At Enel X we are able to put more than 50 years of experience in the energy markets to use to tailor demand response programs that ensure our 6,000 client companies worldwide receive maximum remuneration for minimum disruption.
Enel X can help clients achieve those savings and boost revenues by developing a plan to move a company’s power consumption smoothly to its own generation facilities when it makes financial sense to do so and will not impact operations. We also test those generators to ensure they will work properly when called upon and that they meet what are strict regulatory and environmental requirements.
If clients’ generators do not meet those specifications, we can finance and implement upgrades to ensure that they come up to the standards required and are therefore able to participate in demand response programs. What’s more, we can do that at zero upfront cost to the customer.
At Enel X we’re at the forefront of energy innovation and a global leader in demand response, managing 6.3 gigawatts in 15 countries through our Network Operations Centre in Dublin. Our state-of-the-art centre is staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, managing more than 50 demand response programs around the world, all governed by very different regulatory frameworks and business dynamics.
Demand response programs are open to any facility that can reduce consumption by at least 100 kilowatts. Advantages to taking part include so-called availability payments, in effect a retainer that’s in addition to the energy payments received in exchange for a cut in consumption. Early warning of grid issues is another advantage for participants because it gives time to prepare for any disruption.
At Enel X our mission is to help industrial and commercial clients around the world monetize their efforts to decarbonize and use energy in the most efficient way possible while leading the way to a greener, more sustainable future.