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Launching the International Community for Local Smart Grids (ICLSG) with the University of Oxford

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We are glad to announce the launch of a knowledge sharing partnership of distribution network operators and community energy groups, led by the University of Oxford and supported by Enel Foundation as research partner. The International Community for Local Smart Grids (ICLSG) was first introduced at COP26 and it aims to put communities and smart grids at the heart of net zero, building on the awareness that even though climate change is an international challenge, it requires local solutions

The partners of this venture are drawn from Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand and Australia and are committed to securing a faircost-effective transition to net zero. For electricity distribution network operators, the net zero transition means supporting the arrival of electric vehicles, electrified heating and customers who choose to become electricity generators. Networks must be smart and adapt at unprecedented speeds to the new requirements for powering their communities. 

Community energy groups are tackling complex issues to secure benefits to their local area whilst combatting climate change. Our partners are rooted in their communities’ priorities for net zero and are working to ensure their solutions work socially, environmentally and financially.

The combination of expertise that partners bring will be enhanced and developed by a research programme, that will explore how smart grids can support net zero technologies in a way that is good for people and good for the planet.

Professor Malcolm McCulloch, who will be leading the research and who  Head of the Energy and Power Group, part of the Department of Engineering and Science at the University of Oxford, said: “From Oxford to Waikato and from Dublin to Tokyo, the climates and regulatory structures within which electricity distribution networks and communities operate may be very different, but all our partners are tackling the same problems of how to innovate and cooperate as the world turns to zero carbon technologies. Our research will draw in learnings from partners’ smart grid and community trials and will identify and develop the tools needed to deliver a just transition to net zero.”

ICLSG partners are: University of Oxford (research partner) 

Network operatorsAusgridScottish and Southern Electricity NetworksTEPCO Power Grid, WEL Networks 

Community partnersCORENALow Carbon Hub 

Research partner:  Enel Foundation 

To learn more, visit communitysmartgrids.org

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