On its first anniversary, Energy Superhub Oxford (ESO), a partnership between EDF Renewables UK, Oxford City Council, Fastned, Tesla Superchargers and Wenea, has reduced carbon emissions and encouraged uptake of EVs in the region, playing an essential role in Oxford’s path to net zero.
Since its opening, around 32,000 vehicles have been charged, saving approximately 732.66 tonnes of carbon, the equivalent of planting around 4,300 trees in the Oxford area to absorb the CO2 in the atmosphere. It has also provided 1,145 MWh of power to local residents.
Energy Superhub Oxford is the first example of a new model spearheaded by EDF Renewables UK, with the UK’s first transmission-connected battery combined with Europe’s most powerful EV charging network. It supplies power for rapid charging for EVs and vehicle fleets, meeting the rising demand for power that electrification brings without overburdening the local electricity distribution network. On average, data shows it supports roughly 95 charging sessions per day, enabling residents to drive around 3,309,248 miles over the course of the year, powered by clean energy.
Throughout 2022, 9,084 EVs and 4,967 hybrid petrol and diesel cars were registered in Oxfordshire, compared to 5,022 battery electric cars and 3,695 hybrid petrol and diesel cars in 2021.1 According to the DVLA, half (50.8%) of newly registered vehicles in Oxfordshire were electric in June 2023, the highest uptake figures in the whole of the UK which indicates that, with ESO providing consumers with the option of clean energy infrastructure on their doorstep, citizens in the region are making greener choices. With demand for EVs showing no signs of diminishing, the technology’s connection to the transmission grid – effectively the motorway of the electricity system – means the future-proof hub can continue to scale as demand increases.
In ESO’s first year, it has become a key piece of the puzzle in scaling up green transport and power in Oxford, with the infrastructure allowing companies like Oxford Bus Company to bring a brand-new fleet of 104 electric buses to the city from the end of 2023. The city has an ambitious goal of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040 – ten years ahead of the legal deadline set by the Government. With the increase in EV uptake, Oxford is now well on its way to the Government’s Road to Net Zero Strategy forecast of having at least 1 in 5 cars fully electric by 2030, and ahead of many other regions in the UK.
Matthew Boulton, Director of Solar, Storage and Private Wire at EDF Renewables UK, said:
“One year on, we’re thrilled to see the impact that Energy Superhub Oxford has had on EV uptake and net zero targets for Oxford, ensuring that these essential goals can be achieved in tandem, without overburdening the grid. With emissions down and electrification on the rise, it’s great to see how, with the right infrastructure, individuals and organisations can – and do – make greener choices. With our technology able to scale as demand grows, we look forward to continuing to work with our partners across the city to drive decarbonisation in the region as we near 2040.”
Councillor Anna Railton, Cabinet Member for Zero Carbon Oxford and Climate Justice, Oxford City Council, said:
“It is very exciting that the Energy Superhub Oxford project has achieved one year of operation. This was a significant moment for our city as we work to become a zero-carbon Oxford by 2040 and I am delighted that so many people have visited and used the Superhub. This is a prime example of how private companies and local councils can work together to achieve net zero.”
Jesper, a local Oxford resident said:
“It is great that Energy Superhub Oxford is marking a full year since its launch. As an electric vehicle owner, it is vital that we have reliable options for charging both on the street but also at convenient locations across the country. The Redbridge Superhub is a great facility which caters for all use cases – from long-distance travellers needing a rapid charge and day tripper to Oxford to residents like me who need local options. I hope to see more across the country.”
ESO’s data gathering capabilities also highlights insights into people’s behaviour concerning EV charging. People are most likely to charge their vehicles in the afternoon – around 16-16:30 following work or the school run – rather than into the evenings post-19:00. They are also more likely to charge on a Sunday rather than a Monday. The data, therefore, shows that the best time to charge your vehicles and avoid a queue would be a weekday, in the morning, early afternoon or later in the evening.
This project is part of EDF Renewables UK’s nationwide rollout of Energy Superhubs. The company plans to deploy 40 Energy Superhubs across the UK, with the next two battery storage projects already underway in Coventry and Sandwell. Once complete, the network could provide almost 10% of the energy storage that the UK is predicted to require by 2035.
SOURCE: Oxford City Council