A Case Study - Investigating the role of local policy in creating a Highly Distributed Power System The City of Leeds

Sparling, W (2011) A Case Study - Investigating the role of local policy in creating a Highly Distributed Power System The City of Leeds. [Dissertation]

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Energy is and essential part of modern life and comprises three distinct sectors,
electricity, heat and transport. The way that the world currently produces and uses
energy represents 80% of global greenhouse gas emissions, therefore it is clear that
the current energy system is the primary cause and therefore primary means of
mitigating against climate change (Anderson et al. 2008). The particular importance
of decarbonisation of the electricity industry arises from our interdependence on
electricity and our need to maintain security and reliability of supply. The United
Kingdom currently relies on electricity for keeping lights on, heating homes, powering
industry, transportation and powering complex communications networks (National
Grid 2008). Low carbon and renewable energy sources are required in order to
combat the effects of climate change and to move towards safeguarding the security
of the United Kingdom’s energy supply. Major changes to the way that the UK uses
and distributes energy are required and at the centre of this is a transformation of the
entire UK electricity system. The principal aim of this dissertation is to investigate the
role of local energy policy within the City of Leeds in creating a Highly Distributed
Power System. The literature review determined that at a national level there is a
conflict between academics, who think that changes to policy are required, and the
government, who believe that market forces are best placed to drive change.
Analysis of the policy of the absolished regional government of Yorkshire and the
Humber and the City of Leeds found that there is little or no mention no of Highly
Distributed Power Systems within any literature. The dissertation also discovered that
this is probably due to a lack of clear direction from central government. The
dissertation concludes that there is very little mention of HDPS within the local policy
due to this lack of direction from central government.

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