10 October 2023
Access to key data is vital in the journey to net zero - it underpins critical decisions like the location of new on-street electric vehicle chargers. It’s also key in the roll-out of domestic heat pumps and other low-carbon technologies.
Using this data means the electricity infrastructure will be ready to harness renewable resources, such as solar and wind power. Demand for this key data is growing, and SSEN is committed to making it more useful and more accessible.
This ground-breaking new platform, which has been developed in partnership with net zero data experts Icebreaker One, aims to revolutionise access to crucial data, empowering organisations and individuals in SSEN’s distribution areas to drive sustainability and energy efficiency.
The data portal will also feature data-led visualisations to enhance the interpretation and communication experience for users.
Michael Glass, Data Governance and Information Manager for SSEN Distribution, has been integral in developing the data portal and explains more:
“SSEN is ushering in a new era of data-sharing by becoming the first energy network provider in the UK to work with Icebreaker One to build a user-friendly platform that will open up its load-modelling data, and enhance the experience for customers and stakeholders.
“By using this anonymised and aggregated data, greater insight into customer usage patterns is readily available and therefore empowers individuals, local councils and businesses to install more EV charging points that will benefit local EV driver, electrified public transport and fleet vehicles, and even customers with electric bikes and scooters.”
“Additionally, the use of this highly innovative and intuitive data portal will facilitate the identification of network capacity hotspots, expediting installation of heat pumps and solar panels; all key areas that will enable the UK and SSEN’s customers to meet their net zero goals.”
The collaboration between SSEN and Icebreaker One provides open data content, which is published under the standard Creative Commons international licence, ensuring ease of access and utilisation – with the data portal itself allowing users to access data through direct downloads and application programming interface (API).
Gavin Starks, Founder and CEO of Icebreaker One, said:
"Data is essential to achieving net zero - but only if the people who need it can find and trust it.
"More people need to access the data that distribution networks like SSEN hold, which is why we’ve worked together to make that data easier to find, use and trust than ever before.
"Opening up SSEN’s data is going to get more electric vehicles on the road, more heat pumps in houses across the country, and more homes kept warm by better insulation. It’s all part of our work to make data work harder to deliver net zero."
With the support of Microsoft and the Azure platform, SSEN will automate data uploads directly from the source, ensuring the latest data is always available. User feedback on data quality and metrics will be actively sought, with a strong emphasis on providing information to support the use of SSEN’s data. The load modelling data that SSEN has shared today is the first delivery of many, with each one leveraging advances in information and accuracy.
Looking to the future, and the positive impact this new data portal will have on the drive to net zero, Michael Glass said:
“Our commitment to transparency and accessibility is a significant step forward in the transition to a net zero future, and the launch of our data portal sees us making our first steps into open-data sharing, with a focus on delivering the value that can be achieved in a collaborative data exchange platform.
“By empowering stakeholders with vital information, this innovative data portal will play a pivotal role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving energy efficiency, and ultimately driving the UK closer to achieving its sustainability goals.”
To learn more about SSEN Distribution’s data portal, click here.