Energy Production & CO2 Emissions
The level of CO2 emissions from power plants can vary significantly, depending on the type of plant and the fuel it uses. As a result, the overall CO2 intensity of power production in a country like Belgium can vary considerably over the course of a day, depending which power plants are operating at that time.
This matters because, as we all know, CO2 is a greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. So if we want to reduce our emissions (and we should!), then it's important to pay attention to the CO2 intensity of our power supply.
Average life-cycle CO2 equivalent emissions (source: IPCC)
If we take this into account, we can imagine a scenario where the user would like to use a battery to make up for his/her inability to shift power consumption to times when there is more green energy production. For example, on a sunny and windy afternoon most of Belgium's power production comes from solar and wind sources, resulting in an overall low CO2-intensity. However, the user might be at work at these times.
So in contrast, when the user returns in the evening from his work and the consumption is high, resulting in a high CO2-intensity of the Belgian Grid. A user can thus want to charge in the afternoon and discharge in the evening, in order to reduce some of the CO2 production produced when faster more poluting power plants have come into action, in order to keep the supply and demand balanced.
Belgium’s power grid CO2-intensity of a typical day
If we run a simulation on all of the CO2-intensity data from 2021, and we assume that the user will use the CO2 optimisation algorithm in the MyGrid Portal, the ModuleOne (1,5kWh) will fully charge when the CO2-intensity is low and discharge when the CO2-intensity is high.
By using the CO2 optimisation algorithm the user can reduce its CO2-footprint by 37777.5 gCO2eq per year on average, which is equivalent to driving 350km in a standard passenger car.
It is important to take into account that there is a correlation between CO2-intensity and price, i.e., prices are mostly low due to an abundance of cheap green energy.
As a result, a MyGrid customer who focuses on lowering their energy bill in a dynamic tariff scenario will also reduce their CO2-footprint and similarly, a MyGrid user thats focussed on reducing its CO2-footprint, will enjoy the side effect of rescuing his energy bill.