Zero Carbon Rugeley project

Zero Carbon Rugeley is a project to produce an innovative design for a town-wide Smart Local Energy System (SLES) including the former Rugeley Power Station site. This is one of just a dozen such pioneering programmes in the UK and will demonstrate how carbon emissions and energy costs can be reduced whilst also providing a boost for local regeneration.

In designing the SLES, the project partners will take full advantage of the latest renewable energy technologies and smart control systems to deliver clean, affordable energy for residents. As such, the innovative Rugeley SLES will create a scalable energy solution that can be replicated in other areas in support of the UK’s transition to a zero-carbon future.

At the centre of this pioneering project is the Rugeley community; residents, local businesses and commuters who access the area regularly. Crucially, ‘User-Centric Design’ is embedded in the proposed solutions, using innovative community engagement methodologies to ensure the wants and needs of the community are addressed. Zero Carbon Rugeley will create “a bespoke Rugeley SLES”, not simply an “SLES for Rugeley”, demonstrating how carbon emissions and energy costs can be reduced whilst simultaneously boosting local economic regeneration and social integration.

Find out the latest project information and join the discussion on the Engage Zero Carbon Rugeley Facebook page, or for project related questions reach out to the community engagement team at engagezcr@keele.ac.uk

What is the project about?

The project aims to deliver an energy system design for the area which is sustainable, low carbon, and that drives the regeneration of the town and local energy infrastructure.

The project will undertake these activities:

Why a SLES?

With the rapid growth of renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar energy, the nature of the UK’s energy infrastructure has changed dramatically.

In contrast to the older picture where the nation’s energy supply was from a few large power stations, we are now producing energy at many locations throughout the country. Feeding all this energy back into the national grid is expensive, disruptive and puts a strain on existing systems.

The concept of an SLES is to harness locally produced energy and put it to use within the local community. This will deliver benefits for local people including:

  • Reduced energy costs
  • Improved energy efficiency
  • Lower carbon emissions
  • Lower environmental impact
  • Creation of a local energy marketplace
  • Local ownership of energy production and distribution
  • Greater energy independence
  • Boosting local employment
  • Closer engagement with local stakeholders

How will a SLES work?

The energy industry has seen significant change in recent years. Not just in how energy is produced but also in the use of smart information and communication technologies in the control of that energy.

The Rugeley SLES will be at the leading edge of the application of these technologies. In doing so it will integrate a number of energy solutions, taking maximum advantage of locally produced energy, which will be operated digitally at a local level.

Main Partners