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NEWS: £27 shaved from annual home energy bills by renewables.

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… Could have been £140 with faster roll-out.    Britain’s wind and solar farms could help to reduce households’ energy bills by paying back almost £800m to consumers by the end of the winter after gas and electricity market prices rocketed above their set subsidy levels.

News: Tidal energy potential

Stephen Wyatt, director of research and disruptive innovation at Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (ORE) has claimed that we could be in the “golden decade” for the tidal stream energy. He proposes that investment and subsidies could pave the way to the technology to become cost-effective, with a potential to provide 10% of the UK’s electricity requirements. With around 80% of the supply chain in the UK, the industry could create 26,600 jobs by 2040.     Read more Civil engineering and construction here

Workshop on Energy System Flexibility

Flexibility refers to the ability to use generation, storage and demand side resources making the most of computational intelligence distributed along the grid for balancing energy supply and demand. Increasing the energy system flexibility is key to ensure the reliable integration of larger shares of renewable generation and empower consumers, while securing the grid stability. Despite the progress being made, several regulatory, technological, operational and market challenges are still at stake, including the citizens and communities’ engagement. This online workshop aims to bring together stakeholders to discuss present and future challenges, experiences, and best practices to foster more effective and efficient solutions for the flexibility of the Portuguese energy system.

News: Urban gardens are a dependable food source for pollinators through the year

By harnessing and directing the expertise of our 600-strong academic community, we develop practical, interdisciplinary solutions that both improve how we live in our world and enable us to face the challenges arising from our interactions with the environment.

Gardens in cities provide a long and continuous supply of energy-rich nectar from March to October, scientists at the University of Bristol have found.  Despite huge garden-to-garden variation in both the quantity and timing of nectar production, pollinators are guaranteed a reliable food supply if they visit multiple gardens. This contrasts with previous studies on farmland, where pollinators are exposed to boom-and-bust cycles of nectar production with clear seasonal gaps.

News: Government Office for Science ‘A Net Zero Strategy’ Foresight Project

The Government Office for Science has launched a new Foresight Project to help inform the government’s long-term net zero strategy, titled “A net zero society – scenarios and pathways”. This project will provide the evidence and tools to help understand how behaviours could impact net zero. GO-Science are seeking contact with academics who have a strong track record in studying large-scale societal changes. They are interested in perspectives from different disciplines, including history, sociology, anthropology and economics, and are keen to assemble both qualitative and quantitative evidence. If this is of interest, please contact foresight@go-science.gov.uk with a short CV (<1 page) or simple description of your relevant experience in an email.

Consultation: UKRI Survey on Impact in Research Applications

UKRI are now reviewing our systems to better understand the effectiveness of our current approaches in supporting impact across UKRI and through the investments we fund.  They are keen to gather feedback and to gain an understanding of how impact development activities are being embedded into proposals by applicants. The aim is also to determine the effectiveness of existing processes, levels of stakeholder involvement, and how impact development activities within proposals are reviewed and assessed.

News: Low income and living in a rural area increases the risk of double energy vulnerability

Two substantial stepping stones in addressing climate change have taken place in the last three months, with the UK government launching its Net Zero Strategy, in October 2021 and hosting the international community at COP26 in November 2021. Both initiatives aim to work towards delivering a low-carbon, or net-zero, transition. Such a transition must be just and ethical, ensuring that those who are on a low-income, vulnerable or marginalised are not further disadvantaged.

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