The city took another step towards a cleaner, greener future when a Memorandum of Understanding was signed at Cranfield University by Milton Keynes Council and Central Networks, the electricity distribution company for Central England.
Central Networks will be applying for funding from energy regulator Ofgem to develop various low-carbon, energy-saving projects.
The focus of the Memorandum is to work towards a ‘smart grid’ electricity network. Monitoring devices will track electricity flow in the city and help residents to adopt low-carbon energy products such as heat pumps.
It will also allow appliances to operate in the most efficient manner possible, by configuring themselves to operate at off-peak times and by switching themselves off automatically.
Milton Keynes Council chief executive David Hill said: “We are known as the city of ‘firsts’, and again we find ourselves on the cusp of something new and very exciting. It is widely accepted now that we need to live cleaner, greener lives by looking at alternative forms of energy and how we use that energy.”
Cranfield University was chosen as the launch venue because it has the capacity and technology to monitor the electricity use under the new scheme. It is anticipated that they would be working closely with the Open University.
Central Networks director of operations and asset management John Glasgow said: “Central Networks is committed to leading the way forward in the demonstration of ‘smart grid’ technology in the UK.”
In February, Milton Keynes, in conjunction with Central Networks and Nissan, secured funding through the Plugged-in-Places scheme to help build electric car charging infrastructure, for suitable cars, buses and commercial vehicles.