Energy efficiency and energy demand reduction have a key role to play in strengthening energy security, a report by the UK Energy Research Centre has said,
It said reducing energy demand reduces exposure to risks such as price shocks and energy shortages.

The report also found that the relationship between decarbonisation and energy security is “not straightforward” and argues that many of the risks can be mitigated and security of the electricity and gas system can be improved significantly by investing in system flexibility.

Increasing demand side response has the potential for a “particularly positive impact on system reliability”.

Although energy imports are often cited as being insecure, the report said can help enhance security by providing additional sources of energy, by lowering costs, or by increasing diversity.

“What matters most is where the imports are from and whether they are dominated by risky sources or supply routes,” said the report.

System reliability

Professor Goran Strbac, UKERC Researcher, Imperial College London said:

“This analysis demonstrates that gas and electricity system security can be significantly enhanced not only by investment in conventional supply resources, but also by improving system flexibility through demand side response, gas storage and interconnection, which is also important for facilitating cost effective decarbonisation.”

> Read more about the report here