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How Battery Storage Helps Reduce Your Scope 2 Emissions

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The UK’s Sixth Carbon Budget brought a collective commitment to slashing the UK’s emissions by 78% by 2035, ahead of achieving net zero by 2050. Whatever point your organisation is at on your road to achieving net zero, prompt, decisive action is now required to ensure that you keep pace with the expected speed of decarbonisation.

What are Scope 2 Emissions?

While many businesses and other organisations have embraced the need to address their direct emissions, known as Scope 1 emissions, your carbon footprint is significantly wider than that, and these other elements can be more difficult to directly tackle. Scope 2 emissions are greenhouse gases associated with the purchase of electricity, steam, heat, or cooling, and make up a significant proportion of emissions that your business is indirectly responsible for. Globally, Scope 2 emissions make up at least a third of total greenhouse gas emissions.

Unless your operations are able to function entirely using renewable energy, either generated on-site or purchased through an agreement such as a Corporate Power Purchase Agreement, you are still reliant on the UK’s broader energy mix when it comes to your levels of Scope 2 emissions. Fossil fuel generation still makes up a significant percentage of the UK’s total generation, so if you are reliant on grid power, there is only a limited amount you can do to offset Scope 2 emissions. While using 100% renewable energy should be the target for most organisations eventually, it requires significant planning, investment and infrastructure overhauls, such as implementing a smart microgrid across a site.

Tackling Scope 2 Emissions

However, there are steps that you can take now to mitigate your Scope 2 emissions, even when fully dependent on grid supply. The increasingly complex mix of generation methods employed, and the significant changes in overall demand at different times of day, means that the carbon intensity of grid power changes substantially at different times.

Source: National Grid ESO

Typically, electricity is less carbon intensive overnight. By installing a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) you can store this low carbon energy, and discharge it during the day rather than using more carbon intensive grid power. Throughout 2021, a company with a BESS that made use of this technique would save around 10,500kg of CO2 over the course of a year.

While many other options to reduce your Scope 2 emissions exist, many involve additional energy costs at a time where many organisations are already struggling with rapidly escalating wholesale power prices. Others can require dramatic overhauls of your existing energy strategy, such as implementing a microgrid or installing on-site generation. Installing a BESS allows you to make major inroads into reducing your Scope 2 emissions, without the need for a radical rewrite of your energy strategy. As well as delivering a significant carbon reduction, BESS also offers invaluable, instantaneous UPS power to protect your entire site in the event of power disruption, as well as further opportunities to reduce energy costs or improve sustainability by maximising the performance of on-site renewable generation and bolstering energy efficiency.

Find out more about the benefits and additional flexibility that battery storage could offer your business site here

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