A need for smart energy demand and supply
The world is demanding more and more energy. The projected growth of worldwide energy demand by 2030 is 36.8% according to the International Energy Outlook 2008. This is due not only to population growth, urbanisation and improvement in living standards, but also to new requirements such as electric vehicles and the substitution of electricity for hydrocarbon-based fuels as an “energy carrier”.
We now face a series of major problems relating to the generation, transmission and consumption of energy, all of which are essential to business, the way we live and the development aspirations of humankind.
The power generation industry faces major challenges in meeting this growing demand, not least because of inhibitors such as regulation and legislation; inadequate investment returns and unhelpful economic incentives; and of course the supply of natural resources.
Any growth in energy supply must be achieved in a low carbon way. Power generation creates 25% of the world’s CO2 emissions, the largest man-made source, according to The Climate Group and McKinsey & Co., (“Smart 2020 Report”). The industry is both a major greenhouse gas emitter and one of the solutions to reducing emissions. Electric vehicles are promoted by many as the best option to reduce vehicle emissions, but there is little point in doing this if the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity is no ‘cleaner’ than it is today.
Successful electricity companies of the future will be those that act now upon the clear signals that climate change is underway. They will have a fully integrated approach to the challenges of the energy revolution, reducing emissions and adapting to climate change. They will use the lessons gained from the present financial crisis and from history to avoid the even greater and entirely ‘predictable surprise’ created by climate change.
Community Energy Monitoring
Join a live tweet chat on 14 May @ 3pm GMT on the #IBMChale energy monitoring project.
A series of conversations for a smarter planet
Energy Australia: a global intelligent network
See how Energy Australia is giving its 1.6 million customers the most reliable and high quality service.
Powering the City
See why cities must implement a smarter energy system to supply, produce and manage energy more effectively in the future.
Severn Trent Water
See how Severn Trent Water is improving quality and enhancing services while keeping customers’ bills low by running a £2.45 billion asset investment programme over five years.
Smarter Energy Virtual Briefing Centre
Energy companies around the world are implementing more efficient grids and finding creative approaches to saving energy. Register at the Smarter Energy Virtual Briefing Centre to watch presentations that feature industry experts and executives from innovative companies.
The series Transforming your utility network explains how IBM helped Hydro One Networks supply and deploy a Distribution Management System; enabled electricity distributor OnCor to implement a scalable security solution; and worked with CenterPoint Energy on a private wi-max network.
Intelligent Electric Vehicle Enablement discusses the future of electric vehicles and how technology and market development are adapting to integrate EVs with the electric grid.
Knowledge is power: Driving smarter energy usage through consumer education looks at ways utilities and other smart-grid advocates can inform consumers about managing their own energy usage to help meet future needs and expectations.
Consumers must help with the supply side… and utilities with demand.
Electricity is a complex system-of-systems and it requires an integrated approach to fundamentally redesign the way the industry works. Many opportunities exist to optimise and grow existing capabilities and accelerate emerging technologies to commercial scale, relying on collaboration between consumers and utilities companies.
Three areas of action to address energy production:
- Optimise: Apply smart solutions to extend existing capabilities. Examples could include: asset life extension and optimisation programmes; and new, cleaner fossil-fuel plants.
- Grow: Rapidly grow existing capability through smarter design and operation. Examples could include: new-build nuclear programmes; automated & intelligent smart grids; smart metering; and new regulatory incentives.
- Accelerate: Nurture and accelerate new capabilities to commercial scale. Examples could include: carbon capture and storage; deep-water wind; tidal / wave power; micro-combined heat and power (CHP); more efficient home wind & solar; distributed on-shore wind, waste & bio; various forms of storage; electric vehicle infrastructure; and intelligent home devices.
IBM Smarter Trends
This new resource shares content on key issues such as: transport, energy, water and city development.
The reputational risk and IT connection
How security and business resilience can protect business value in the energy and utilities sector.
Turning the tide
Making the smart grid work
Business Analytics & Optimisation
Smart Grid feature stories
Analytics, asset management and other technologies are making wind farms smarter, adding momentum to this fast-growing industry.
The energy and auto industries are getting ready to take a road trip together toward e-mobility.
Get the latest thinking on strategies and solutions for securing the smart grid.
Micro grids. Smarter nuclear power. Grid security.
Download these three preview chapters to our new book: "Generating Insights — Accelerating into a New Era in Energy"
A collaboration between IBM and Kyoto Publishing
The Eco Island Project
Eco Island is an ambitious change programme. It will turn the Isle of Wight into the ultimate Eco Island, with strong communities and the lowest carbon footprint in England by 2020. IBM and other companies are working with the island to develop innovative ways in which demand and supply can be managed and controlled in order to maximise the potential use of renewable power sources. The aim is to reduce emissions and waste while also cutting the Isle of Wight's fuel bills by up to 50 per cent.
Watch the video of David Green, CEO and founder of The Eco Island Partnership CIC at The IBM Summit 2011
Power in numbers: The twelve-member Global Intelligent Utility Network Coalition advances
the smart grid worldwide
In 2007, IBM formed a coalition of innovative utility companies to accelerate the use of smart grid technologies and move the industry forward through its most challenging transformation. The Global Intelligent Utility Network Coalition wants to change the way power is generated, distributed and used by adding digital intelligence to the current systems to reduce outages and faults, manage demand, and integrate renewable energy sources such as wind and power.
Today the Coalition comprises twelve members serving nearly 100 million energy customers worldwide. Each utility company brings a unique expertise to the table. For example, DONG Energy of Denmark is a leader in renewable energy, sourcing 20% of their power from wind and working toward generating 50% of their energy with CO2-neutral resources by 2020. And NDPL of India offers the perspective of providing power to an emerging market, where reliability and full access to electricity are still a challenge.
The Coalition shares ideas and best practices through in-person meetings and virtual interactions, benchmarks their efforts, shares knowledge on critical issues and undertakes collaborative initiatives. For example, the successful CenterPoint Energy Smart Grid Demonstration Centre gave Country Energy the insight they needed to create their own centre in Queenbeyan, Australia.
The Global Intelligent Utility Network Coalition's first collaborative effort was the creation of a Smart Grid Maturity model (US), which has been used by over 60 utilities from around the world to assess where they are and plan their own smart grid programme. It was recently donated to Carnegie Mellon's Software Engineering Institute for use by the industry. Other collaborations are focused on the impact of the smart grid on climate change, consumer perspectives, standards and interoperability and possible future regulatory models.
How IBM can help
Making the smart grid work - the future of smarter energy
UK Smart Energy Cloud - supporting the UK's Smart Meter Implementation Programme
Smarter Energy for a Sustainable Future
Read the report by the Bathwick Group based on proceedings at the IBM Summit at Start.
Plugging in the consumer
Read the report on how consumers will soon be participating in the energy supply network.