Renewable Energy Research Imperial College

UK Energy Research Centre

Business School Lead Investigator: Professor Richard Green

Funder: EPSRC

Duration: December 2014 – April 2019

The UK Energy Research Centre is a multi-year collaborative research programme uniting engineering and social science research to examine local, regional, national and international energy systems. Now in its third phase the UKERC is examining the relationship between UK and EU policy and how the tensions and trade-offs between EU policy goals and Member State priorities need to be investigated and understood, leading to important technical, economic and governance implications.

Imperial College Business School collaborated on a sub-project that examined the tensions and trade-offs in European energy policies, particularly the interaction between policies and politics at the UK and EU levels. It particularly focused on coordination of market and regulatory issues, and considered whether effective policy-making could stem from greater co-ordination and harmonisation between EU and UK approaches. Examples included whether development of improved interconnector capacity could give the UK access to hydro-electricity in northern Europe or to gas storage facilities in other Member States. This was examined in the context of the already controversial 2020 EU climate and energy package that has had important impacts for Member State energy policies and subsequent tensions about 2030 targets.

The UKERC as a whole will also consider the engineering challenges of converting such a large volume of energy into convenient forms, the relationship between conversion facility and user location and balancing the rate of conversion and transfer with that of use. Through a coherent programme of project the UKERC will address these issues, building on the earlier research of Phases 1 and 2.

Key research questions:

  • What are the interactions between UK and EU level energy politics, and what effect would greater integration have for both?
  • What effect has the 2020 climate and energy package had on Member States and what are the arising tensions in setting 2030 targets? 

Research partners 

  • University of Strathclyde
  • University of Edinburgh
  • Visit the UKERC website