Energy supplier OVO has announced the national rollout of Power Move, which allows customers to earn £10 a month as part of a demand flexibility scheme (DFS) to shift their energy consumption.
Peak energy consumption from 4-7pm is when energy is also most expensive. OVO says customers can save as much as £15 million a month by switching to off-peak usage.
OVO says the DFS will make it the “first and only provider to commit to consistently paying customers all-year-round for shifting energy use out of peak hours to times when the grid is greener.”
The scheme was trialled last winter, and saw OVO pay back just under £150,000 to customers, saving 22.3 tonnes of carbon. OVO’s DFS is separate to the Demand Flexibility Service run by National Grid ESO, also referred to as DFS.
1.5 million OVO customers will be rewarded under the scheme with £10 per month for reducing their consumption to 12.5% of their daily usage, between 4 and 7pm. Consumers generally use 19% of their daily energy consumption in this period.
OVO says the reduced consumption is equivalent to an average household moving an energy consuming activity (cooking one meal in an oven for an hour, three dishwasher loads, four loads of washing) from peak to off-peak.
OVO plans to change the challenges and rewards from the Power Move scheme each season.
Natalie Harris, 52 years old, from Bristol, took part in the trial and commented: “OVO paid me £80 last winter for making simple changes that reduced demand on the grid. This meant I was able to treat myself when I did my weekly shop. I’ve tried to keep up the good habits I made, for example I’m more conscious of when I run the washing machine and I try not to put the oven on during peak hours. I would definitely sign up to Power Move again because I like to do my bit for the planet and the savings are a lot of money for me.”
Mat Moakes, chief commercial officer at OVO, said: “Changing what time of day you put the washing machine on might seem small, but our Power Move trials showed these small acts can make a massive impact. That’s why we’re paying customers to move their energy use out of peak times, to times of day when the sun is shining and the wind is blowing. This is all part of our commitment to help make our customers’ homes, as well as the energy system, greener.”
OVO recently announced that its EV customers saved over £1 million in half a year on its Charge Anytime tariff. In April, the company announced that it was abandoning the Renewable Energy Guarantee of Origin scheme in favour of a new tariffs system which chief executive Raman Bhatia said would directly support renewable energy and decarbonisation.
Bharia said customers are often confused about how to make the right green choices because the price signals are missing. Incentivising changing patterns of consumption through variable price signals is set to be a core component of demand flexibility in the UK energy grid as the smart meter rollout achieves saturation.