Increasing renewable energy and reducing customer bills: using managed connections and flexible demand response controls in the electricity network to support decarbonisation with the minimum infrastructure investment.

Impact: Environmental, Economic


University of Manchester research, in collaboration with Electricity Northwest Ltd (ENWL), has developed and implemented a suite of control options across the electricity network of the North West of the UK. This avoided substantial cost-intensive upgrades, whilst enabling the integration of a growing number of renewable technologies into the network. ENWL are now able to provide “fast-reserve” services to the National Grid. Collectively, this research has:
- Fundamentally changed ENWL’s policy making and investment process to assess network upgrade options;
- Provided evidence enabling ENWL to secure GBP18,000,000 funding for the UK’s first actively optimised network;
- Since 2016, generated [text removed for publication] savings (to ENWL and customers) across the network;
- Since 2019, generated [text removed for publication] “fast-reserve” revenue for ENWL;
- Supported trials (Smart Streets) that could save up to 17 MtCO2e in the North West of England by 2060.

Category of impact

  • Environmental
  • Economic
1 Jan 2015 - 1 Jan 2020

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