On the 9th August, a significant power cut across the UK caused 300,000 homes and businesses to lose power, affecting a total of 1 million people (1).
The National Grid worked quickly to fix the issue and are investigating its cause, but it left many businesses wondering:
Could this happen again?
How much does a power cut cost my business?
Am I protected in the event of another power failure?
There are many factors outside of your business’s control that can impact your power supply. In this low carbon landscape, the mix of generation on the grid system will depend more and more on when the wind blows and when the sun shines. The UK’s grid system must balance supply and demand in varying weather conditions, which can cause volatility in supply. With increased volatility comes an increased likelihood of power cuts and the thought of your business grinding to a halt can be worrying.
Whatever the cause of an outage, it is important to have a solution that works for your business, rain or shine.
Some businesses may think they are covered by traditional solutions, such as UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supplies) or Diesel Generators. But they both have significant limitations and may not be suitable for protecting your business in a meaningful way.
UPS is traditionally designed to protect an organisation’s servers and data for a short period of time (up to 30 minutes), until the power is reinstated, or a business can safely shut down. However, these systems have limited capacity to cope with longer power cuts, meaning they are ineffective at keeping a whole business running. In addition, the upfront investment and ongoing costs of charging the system, to keep it full and to maintain a safe operating temperature, makes it costly to run.
Alternatively, Diesel Generators can provide more power than UPS systems but come with significant costs to your business and the environment. They are highly polluting and carbon intensive, which can lead to environmental and health problems (2). To be kept ready for operation, they must also be run regularly, or they seize up and will cease to operate when called upon. This means many businesses have to burn diesel on a monthly basis with no business benefit, wasting money and energy whilst polluting the planet.
However, an Energy Storage System can provide more electricity than both traditional options, offering a reliable, low carbon back-up solution to your business. Charged by your electricity supply or on-site generation, it can separate you from the grid in the event of a power cut or poor connection. This gives you the resilience and peace of mind that your business can keep on going, whatever happens.
Additionally, if your business is supplied by zero carbon, 100% renewable electricity, you can have the confidence that your back-up power doesn’t have a negative impact on the environment.
Energy Storage Systems are relatively low maintenance and their true value is giving your business flexibility. As well as giving you back-up power and peace of mind, their storage capacity can be used for cost avoidance, revenue generation and peak shaving. However, the main obstacle for batteries is that the upfront costs are typically higher than businesses are prepared to pay. But with funding and finance options now available, upfront costs can be replaced with manageable monthly payments.
With these new funding options, an attitude shift needs to take place. We should no longer view batteries as an expensive purchase in the short-term, but a long-term investment that’s integral to grid stability and protecting businesses.
To learn more about the UK’s recent power cut, read the National Grid’s statement at: https://www.nationalgrideso.com/power-cut-9-august-eso-statement.
For more information on how a battery storage solution could help your business, get in touch with our team of experts at [email protected] on or 0330 058 0700.
By Rob Samuelson, Business Development Director of Bryt Energy Storage
This is a promoted article.