Gas networks call for ideas from low carbon innovators

Gas networks are inviting low carbon innovators to share their ideas for innovation with funding of up to £20 million per annum available.

Gas networks call for ideas from low carbon innovators

They’ve launched a call for ideas for exciting innovation projects which can deliver carbon or environmental benefits for customers. Funding of up to £20m per annum is available through the Networks Innovation Competition (NIC), and the gas networks are inviting third parties to submit their proposals for flagship innovation projects and to take advantage of this opportunity to work together.

Greater innovation and collaboration in the markets keeps the costs of operating and maintaining the energy networks down and is essential if the UK is to meet its ambitious environmental targets.

Matt Hindle, head of gas at Energy Networks Association, said: “One of the biggest challenges for the energy sector is how we decarbonise heat at the lowest cost to customers without jeopardising energy security. Innovation is fundamental to achieving this goal and decarbonisation is beginning to be viewed as an enabler, rather than a barrier, to reducing energy costs and delivering economic growth. Already the NIC has funded successful projects, resulting in significant benefits both in terms of cost and carbon reduction. We strongly encourage innovators to submit their ideas for flagship innovation projects and look forward to working together to decarbonise the energy system and maximise benefits for consumers.”

The NIC to date has been a success, providing over £41 million of funding for 10 projects since its inception.

Projects include looking at the development of low carbon options for the gas networks such as hydrogen, biomethane and bioSNG; using gas as a fuel for transport; and the use of new technologies for operations and maintenance work, such as using robotics and Artificial Intelligence, to lower the cost and improve efficiency, safety and environmental impact of utility excavations and activity.


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