How can our homes be self sufficient using Renewable Energy?
As renewable technology improves, new opportunities allow renewable energy sources to be used as a main source of power for our homes. In the last few years, solar energy in the UK has been heavily invested in with 709,000 installations. (figure from Greenmatch). They also believe that 20 million households could be equipped with solar panels by 2020.
With a higher demand for renewables and the further development of technology, can our homes really be self sufficient?
Solar energy has become more popular since the Feed In Tariff (FiT) was introduced, which allows unused electricity to be sold back to the grid. However with the development of new technology, this could be unnecessary. Several companies have created a home battery power unit that can store excess electricity generated by solar panels.
Firstly, the Tesla Powerwall allows homeowners to store surplus energy generated during the day then extract the energy when its needed. Tesla have already created very reliable electric cars. And are now combining their solar power and battery storage to create the ultimate self sufficient living space. Could this new technology lead to a greener future? Potentially, but the costs need to be considered with the Powerwall costing approx. £6,000 excluding the installation fee that could add a further £1000-3000. (Figures from 2019)
However, this new development in technology could revolutionise how we live and use energy. We could see our homes become mini-energy storage units with much lower emissions powering everything we do, from our cars to the washing machine.
Another option is the OVO Energy Home energy storage. This currently offering a trial to their customers allowing them to use a storage battery. The battery works by storing surplus energy from the grid when demand is low. And when demand increases, the battery will pump energy back to the grid. This method is being trialled to reduce energy wastage, so solar panels are not necessary for this product as the energy can be stored from the energy already coming from the grid.
Creation of a greener future could not be more important with the current prediction of climate change and these new products have the potential to contribute towards the development of efficient energy storage. Battery storage technology is predicted to grow considerably in the next few years.This allows homeowners to recognise the importance and savings that the new renewable era could offer.