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Low Carbon Ready

Cleaner engines

We’re deploying new alternately-fuelled hybrid generators to significantly lower carbon emissions while keeping customers on supply during power cuts as part of our industry leading Green Action Plan. 

Project-on-a-Page summary

Project data

Start date: 01/10/2020
End date: 31/10/2022
Budget: £433,000

On rare occasions, we deploy back-up generators to keep power supplies 99.99% reliable for millions of customers in London, the South East and East of England. We do this to keep our customers safe and warm, especially during periods of bad weather when power cuts are more likely to occur. Cleaner Engines aims to test alternatively-fuelled hybrid generators which produce fewer carbon emissions than those currently in use.

We’re investigating three types of hybrid generators running on three different fuels:

  • Biofuel (hydrotreated vegetable oil – HVO)
  • Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)
  • Glycerine

In the project, we are working with two suppliers to design, build and demonstrate these innovative generator technologies. We’re testing these different alternatives to make sure we ultimately select the one which provides the best performance, efficiency, reliability and emissions reduction.

We’re designing and testing brand new types of generators that have never been deployed before. The project will trial several innovative new fuels, including a biofuel made from vegetable oil and glycerine which is used in Formula E race cars.

The project will help us understand which type of hybrid generator is best for our customers and produces the greatest reduction in emissions. We will also learn how the new types of fuels could be stored and handled in practice. Overall, the project will also inform our industry leading Green Action Plan and help us lower our carbon footprint.


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