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Give up your cultural identity, save some (miserable) money

British energy companies ask consumers to turn off the light for an hour, for a fee, and also not to make tea. The request is part of a broader plan to prevent power outages. Not everyone can participate in the experiment, and you can’t get rich from it either

The request is valid for Monday evening between 17.00 and 18.00 and belongs to the demand Flexibility service. If you turn off practically everything and therefore don’t do laundry, don’t use a dishwasher and light candles instead of turning on the light, you can get 10 pound in the most favourable case. And that only applies to people who have a smart meter in the meter cupboard and have signed up for the project. You’re not going to get rich, but the shame is real.

The experiment in which people are compensated when they use less energy was conceived last year after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. By now, a million customers and energy companies have signed up for this. Also, 26 suppliers have joined the program, including British Gas, EoN, Octopus Energy and EDF.

The reason for conducting this experiment today is the cold weather. In England, code Yellow applies to some parts of the country, at Heathrow airport many flights have now been delayed.

The experiment is rather seen as a precautionary measure, and is therefore not a long-term solution. Every country is working on structural solutions to the energy crisis, there is a lot of investment in wind energy in the UK and within 7 years the country wants to produce enough wind energy for all households in the country.

Paolo Sorbello

Paolo Sorbello is a journalist and researcher. He is a PhD candidate at the University of Glasgow, studying state-business relations in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia. He is also the Business News Editor of the weekly newspaper The Conway Bulletin.

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