Combined Heat & Power, District Heating & Cooling, Demand Side Services

About the Association for Decentralised Energy

The Association for Decentralised Energy (ADE) is the voice for a cost effective, efficient, low carbon, user-led energy system; a market in which decentralised energy can flourish. With more than100 members, we bring together interested parties from across the sector to develop a strong, dynamic and sustainable environment for a range of technologies including combined heat and power, district heating networks and demand side energy services, including demand response.

Our vision

At the Association for Decentralised Energy, we advocate the value of a user orientated approach to meeting energy requirements. Consumers have varied needs from reliable high temperature steam in industry to heating in urban or rural areas.

By starting with the consumer, examining their needs and considering the user in their local context it is possible to design a more local, efficient and less costly energy system where each technology and infrastructure option is considered on its merits.

Our vision is for an energy system that is user-led, dictated by the consumers' needs rather than a system that dictates to them. To make this vision a reality, we focus on technologies and services that have not reached their potential under our current, centralised approach.

Combined heat and power at all scales and with all fuels reduces users’ bills and carbon emissions compared to the separate generation of heat and power.

Heat networks, the supply of heat to homes and businesses through a network of pipes, can reduce consumers’ heating bills in urban areas, and give communities more control over their heating needs.

Energy services, such as a temporary reduction in power demand (known as demand side response), can allow consumers to participate in the electricity system while reducing the need for new energy infrastructure by better system management.

There are no silver bullets which will deliver an affordable, secure and low carbon energy system, but by thinking about the consumer first, we can use a range of options to find the right solutions for the right people in the right place.

 - Dr Tim Rotheray, ADE Director

Aim of the ADE

We act as an advocate for our members by engaging with Government and key decision makers to support cost effective and efficient solutions to industry, businesses and householders by:

  • Developing a user-led policy, putting the energy user’s needs first
  • Delivering a local, low carbon energy system at lowest cost
  • Ensuring an understanding of heat, which makes up half of our energy use
  • Taking an integrated and 'systems thinking' approach
  • Helping users manage energy demand to limit the need for new generation capacity
  • Strengthening the sector’s reputation through industry standards and best practice

What we believe

The country is at a pivotal time in its transition to a low carbon, affordable and secure energy system for the future. We advocate:

  • That energy waste costs taxpayers and consumers money. We must allow measures that help to reduce waste compete fairly against other solutions. 
  • For a user-led energy system, to ensure that the solution offered actually meets the needs of the end user.
  • To take an integrated, local and technology agnostic approach, so that the most cost effective, low carbon and user centric solution is achieved.  
  • For industry to take a proactive approach to protecting consumers, by working closely with other stakeholders. 

Activity and focus

In broad terms, the work of the ADE sits within four areas of activity:

  • Advocacy: being at the forefront of influencing regulation, planning, design, procurement and operation policy, and customer protection.
  • Thought leadership: communicating compelling policy ideas and market research through reports, briefings, events and training.
  • Promoting best practice and collaboration: working with our members and a wide range of relevant stakeholders to help drive improvement and innovation across the sector.
  • Enhancing and maintaining the reputation of the sector: building understanding and capacity through our policy and market development activities.
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