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Genesis Energy Launches Advanced Energy Neighbourhood

Genesis Energy Launches Advanced Energy Neighbourhood

New Zealand’s first advanced energy neighbourhood was officially launched today by Genesis Energy, with the aim of creating a test bed to find smarter ways for customers to manage their energy.

“Tomorrow Street” is made up of 15 households on Auckland’s North Shore who will trial a range of energy efficient products and services over the next 18 months. The technology is focused on helping customers find better and smarter ways to manage their energy usage.

Genesis Energy Chief Executive Albert Brantley says the company has launched this initiative to trial products in real home environments and get feedback from the customers who will be using them in every-day situations.

“Tomorrow Street is about taking the guess-work out of how customers will use and manage energy in the future. It’s our way of glimpsing into the future and finding out how well certain products and services perform for customers."

“We fully expect some real wins as well as some failures over the coming months, and that is the great thing about this programme – we will be getting accurate, in-depth feedback on products before we launch them to our customers.”

Mr Brantley says Genesis Energy is focused on creating smart energy systems that are sustainable and deliver results for customers, and Tomorrow Street is a key part of this strategy.

Every Tomorrow Street household will undergo an energy assessment at the start of the programme to ascertain how energy efficient their home is. Improvements will be made to the home dependent on the results of this assessment and may include insulation, installation of energy efficient hot water systems and eco-friendly appliances.

Over the 18 month period, the types of products and services that may be trialled include:

-  A Home energy management system

-  Photovoltaic solar panels

-  Solar hot water systems

-  Heat pump hot water cylinders

-  Smartphone applications to manage home energy use

-  Coaching programmes to educate customers about energy saving

-  Variable ‘time of use’ tariffs ...

Residents of Tomorrow Street will use smartphones and iPads as energy monitoring and management tools. Regular surveys will be conducted by Colmar Brunton to ensure Genesis Energy is getting detailed feedback on how products and services are performing. Other research partners, including The Energy Centre at the University of Auckland and Unitec, will be involved in the analysis of the households’ energy usage and how it relates to building construction.

Sakthy Wijeyesynghe, one of the Tomorrow Street participants, says they applied to participate in the project as they were attracted to trialling innovative ways of managing their family's energy usage.

“This is a unique opportunity to test out new products in our home and to be one of the 15 households to be chosen is great. We are really interested in energy efficiency and believe it’s important for New Zealand to find cleaner, smarter ways to use energy.”

Tomorrow Street residents were selected via an application process open to Genesis Energy customers. The 15 participating households are a mix of families with children, single occupancy homes and empty nesters.

Check out the Tomorrow Street website www.tomorrowstreet.co.nz.

ENDS

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