Help­ing ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties to work smart and live smart


Many ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties draw the short straw when it comes to en­ergy op­tions, with homes that can be less en­ergy ef­fi­cient and de­pen­dent on more ex­pen­sive heat­ing fu­els. Ob­vi­ous so­lu­tions would be to har­ness wind, so­lar or hy­dro sources, but ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties of­ten face bar­ri­ers linked to lim­i­ta­tions with the lo­cal dis­tri­bu­tion in­fra­struc­ture. So, in the past, lo­cal re­new­ables have been un­der-utilised and lo­cal com­mu­nity en­ergy gen­er­a­tion projects deemed too ex­pen­sive. How­ever, a so­lu­tion is at hand in the form of smart tech­nol­ogy, which has the po­ten­tial to help ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties har­ness re­new­ables and ben­e­fit from en­ergy that is cheaper, more ef­fi­cient and more se­cure. It can also en­cour­age higher aware­ness which re­sults in small changes around the home lead­ing to re­duced en­ergy con­sump­tion. Smart me­ters, be­ing rolled out across Great Bri­tain, are a step­ping stone for the greater in­te­gra­tion of re­new­ables into our en­ergy sup­ply.

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