We could get paid to use less energy in the evenings to help the UK avoid blackouts this winter
Households could get paid to use less energy at certain times under a new plan to prevent blackouts this winter.
The aim is to cut energy use at peak times – 4pm until 7pm. Energy firms can sign up to the scheme to pay us to help out.
Taking part could save us £100 at a time when energy bills are sky-high.
It would mean reducing our energy use during a one-hour period on a specific day. We need to have a smart meter installed to take part and we’d get 24 hours’ notice beforehand.
There will be 12 test days over winter to see how customers like the plan. It’ll take place across England, Scotland and Wales.
Each supplier will decide how much to pay back to customers for taking part. They’ll also decide how we get the cash – likely to be either taken off our bills or credited to our account.
Brits have been warned of power cuts lasting up to three hours at a time if gas supplies run low. But this scheme could help avoid this by easing demand on the grid this winter.
So if we’re taking part, we could put the washing machine or tumble dryer on late at night rather than in the evening. Or we could heat dinner in the microwave instead of the oven.
Energy supplier Octopus has said it wants to take part and is running a trial with customers this winter.
Other suppliers are likely to want to take part as well. Keep an eye on the Quids in! news site for updates on how it works and which suppliers are taking part.
There’s more info on the energy crisis and why it’s happening on our website too.
Image: Smart Energy GB