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Place-based Innovation: How can Smart Local Energy Projects and Innovative Planning Support Net Zero?

Smart local energy systems (SLES) are a recent development within the energy sector and come in many varied forms. As innovative concepts, SLES projects across the UK are having to navigate a series of challenges and opportunities in the current policy, regulation and market frameworks.

It is clear that the next stage of decarbonisation demands a behavioural shift by people in their homes and in their local area. But where there is no one-size-fits-all low carbon solution that meets the needs of all localities, how can decision makers be supported and the wider benefits realised?

In this latest insight paper from the Energy Revolution Integration Service (ERIS), we examine the role of place-based innovation through Local Area Energy Planning (LAEP), Pathfinder cities, and Energy Innovation Zones (EIZ) in enabling smart local energy systems (SLES) that offer decarbonisation and positive outcomes for communities and investors.

Key points

  • What is Local Area Energy Planning and how can it support SLES?
  • What are Smart Local Energy Systems (SLES)?
  • The four key elements of LAEP which, in combination, can help establish a solid foundation for local action
  • How policy can be developed to complement LAEP
  • The impact of policy uncertainty and revenue risks on local energy innovation
  • Existing ways to trial innovations under different market arrangement
  • Net Zero Pathfinder cities and Energy Innovation Zones (EIZ)

Read the Report

How can Smart Local Energy Projects and Innovative Planning Support Net Zero?