To evaluate the consequences of applying energy efficiency to the viability of community based small scale renewables, for the case where the grid cannot be used to store excess energy.

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The movie above discusses two trends currently being encouraged by legislation and incentive schemes;

1. Improvements to the fabric of domestic buildings, increasing insulation and draft proofing, driven by EU directives for 2020 stating that all new buildings as of 31st Dec 2020 will have to be nearly zero energy [1].

2. Integrating renewable energy systems at domestic and community levels, incentivised by feed-in tariffs [2] and community loan schemes [3].

Our Hypothesis is that:

Increasingly efficient buildings and communities with reducing demands and renewable resources are not compatible. This is a conflict that could occur in the near future, and needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.

The project objectives are:

• To create three different scenarios based on a small community composed of average detached domestic buildings, designed to 1981 standards, near future standards and the standards which are due by current policy to be enforced by 2050.

• To investigate the future trends in domestic energy consumption and generation.

• To create a sizing technique to size hybrid small-scale renewable supplies.

• To explore the supply-demand matches of each of the scenarios and use various criteria to judge to what extent each scenario is a successful match.


[1] European Renewable Energy Council, Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Accessible at: (Accessed 20/3/12).

[2] Feed-in Tariffs, Department of Energy and Climate Change. Accessible at: (Accessed 13/3/12).

[3] The Community And Renewable Energy Scheme, Scottish Government Website. Accessible at: (Accessed 20/3/12).