Consumers want more control of their energy, says SSE boss

  Consumers want more control over how they use their energy. That’s the view of the boss of Big Six supplier SSE, who believes energy companies must be able to […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha
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Consumers want more control over how they use their energy.

That’s the view of the boss of Big Six supplier SSE, who believes energy companies must be able to deliver that.

Speaking to ELN at the Energy Live 2016 conference last week about the effects of Brexit, Alistair Phillips-Davies said: “I think we were always at a change point anyway, before Brexit we had a couple of things going on: one was a relook at what were the most cost effective ways of delivering renewables and the other one was around people taking a bit more control.

“People want more control whether they’re putting solar panels on their roofs, whether they’re putting Tesla walls on the sides of their house, whether we’re installing CHPs and taking businesses or universities or hospitals off grid. We’ve got to build businesses that deliver that. I still think a big part of our business will be grid-based but I think there will be a growing part of the business where all of us will take a bit more control of our energy.”

He added businesses need certainty and clarity from government to enable them to continue with their plans that were set out prior to the UK voting to leave the EU.

Mr Phillips-Davies said: “For us, we’ve not seen any major changes from government, we want the auctions brought forward, we’d like them to reaffirm their belief in things like capacity mechanism, carbon price floor, all those things that reaffirm the certainty and then we can carry on investing.”

He expects SSE to spend a “a record amount of CAPEX than what we’ve spent before” across the UK and Ireland.

The government recently outlined plans for £580 million of funding for the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme and launched consultations on the development of a smarter and more flexible grid and the closure of unabated coal-fired power stations by 2025.

Keep an eye out for more stories and videos from Energy Live 2016 over the coming days.