Switching off your appliances at peak-time today could earn you £20 as energy companies soft-sell the idea of tea-time blackouts.
As the National Grid fails to cope with the NET ZERO agenda, today's voluntary blackout may well become mandatory. The Grid said it would be activating its (DFS) this evening with 26 major energy suppliers such as British Gas, EDF, Eon and Octopus Energy signed up.
Households could receive payments of up to £20 back if they don't use ovens, washing machines, tumble dryers, dishwashers, games consoles or decide not to charge their cars during the peak tonight. The scheme relies on users having a smart meter, a device which automatically transmits your energy usage to your provider via the internet.
The scheme which some are describing as a voluntary blackout has been devised as Britain's power grid cannot cope with increased demand for electric cars, and heat pumps coupled with the closure of coal-fired power stations to satisfy the Net Zero agenda.
Experts are warning that this is the shape of things to come. But rather than customers with Smart Meters being rewarded for switching off their gadgets at peak times power companies will simply switch them off remotely, or prevent certain appliances from working at all during peak times. New generation Smart Meters give power companies the ability to control your electricity and gas remotely and plan to cut the power at peak times as part of the Demand Flexibility Service.
It is the first time National Grid has implemented its DFS scheme since it was first announced in November, as the UK prepares for freezing temperatures this week. Craig Dyke, Head of National Control at National Grid ESO, suggested that the measure could become a regular part of the UK winter. He said: 'It is something we strongly believe in. It provides flexibility for the system and the consumer. We see this as a growing market. We see this as a world leading step forward into a space where we can only grow and drive forward towards Net Zero'.
But Analysts have warned that today's peak-time switch off is likely to become mandatory as demand outstrips supply. The £20 sweetener is also a gimmit which will not last. The future is mandatory power-cuts via smart meters, with today's voluntary switch-off just a way of conditioning customers to the idea.