Ecoisland - Powered by SSE
The plan to establish the Isle of Wight as the first truly sustainable region in Britain is an ambitious plan, but achievable with the right support from partners.
SSE, Ecoisland’s national energy partner, immediately recognised the potential in the vision and has been a dedicated backer of the initiative from the very beginning.
The energy company - known to those living on the Isle of Wight as Southern Electric - is involved in producing, distributing and supplying electricity and gas, as well as providing other energy-related products, making it the broadest based energy company in the UK. It’s also the UK’s largest generator of renewable energy.
Investment in renewable energy is a core part of SSE’s business strategy to provide the energy we all need in a reliable and sustainable way. To date, SSE has installed over 3,000MW of renewable energy from wind, marine and hydro-electric sources – that’s enough to power around two million homes for one year.
With this level of commitment, expertise and experience SSE is a highly valuable partner on the Ecoisland project.
SSE has supported, funded and initiated a number of projects:
- Electric vehicle charging points: 10 charging points will be funded and installed at Isle of Wight Council car parks, with two already completed.
- Hydrogen trial: SSE is supporting a bid to host a two-year commercial hydrogen trial on the Isle of Wight. If successful, SSE will fund six hydrogen vehicles, and provide the grid connection for a hydrogen refuelling station at St Cross Business Park.
- Renewable energy: SSE is looking into the installation of micro-renewable generation and storage facilities at the Eco Hub, St Cross Business Park that will reduce energy bills for businesses. Funding and expertise will also be provided for other renewable energy projects on the island.
- Smart grid: SSE is working with a number of Ecoisland partners to develop a smart grid infrastructure that will efficiently monitor and manage individual and group customer demand on the island.
- Community energy: a new community energy programme which will provide SSE (Southern Electric) customers with the choice to reduce their bills in the form of a monthly reduction for each SSE account they have, or donate the money to the Ecoisland CIC. In addition, SSE will pay threshold bonuses to Ecoisland based on the number of customer accounts that join the programme. These monies will directly benefit the Isle of Wight by funding Ecoisland projects. Available from July 2012.
This is just a sample of the work that is ongoing in partnership with SSE.
Future plans are being developed for an in-home energy management system for island residents that will enable people to control their energy use remotely using a smart phone or computer.
Longer term, Ecoisland hopes to generate enough renewable energy on the island that the surplus can be sold back to SSE, further reducing bills for those signed up to community energy.