The power of data visualisation projects in the UK’s journey to net zero cannot be understated. By relaying important information through the careful construction of language, narrative and visuals, these projects have the potential to spark positive behavioural change as well as saving local authorities and businesses’ millions. 

The data visualisations in Icebreaker One’s Energy Data Visualisation Showcase (EDVP) are no exception to this. They prove that by gaining access to higher quality, real-time data and creating social proof, we can accelerate progress in sectors such as heating, renewable energy and electric vehicles. 

Our finalists focused on energy usage in public buildings, carbon reduction in schools, surveying of renewable energy developers and reducing the friction of accessing energy data. Alongside the finalists, there’s some amazing work being done across the UK that we wanted to share. 

The demand for electric vehicles is accelerating and by 2030 the number of electric vehicles on the road is set to surpass 10 million. As this number rises, so too will the demand for EV charging points but the two do not grow harmoniously. The AI-centred Mind Foundry is looking to address the short and long term demand for EV charging points and the changing requirements that go with it. This is achieved through coupling geospatial modelling techniques with multivariate data sources. 

Another AI focussed organisation is Grid Edge. Through the creation of a digital twin, Grid Edge is able to optimise energy use in commercial buildings. The solution pulls together the customers’ building management system, metering, sensor and environmental data into one platform. This kind of work is crucial given that the emissions stemming from the built environment are said to make up 40 percent of global emissions. What’s more, more accurate data on the actual operational emissions of a building is an important step forward, providing better insights for businesses and government to act on. 

There is also a lot of innovative work coming out of the Academic sector with Oxford Brookes University creating a spatial and temporal visualisation of local energy flows with their local area mapping tool (LEMAP). LEMAP gives both local authorities and local residents insights on suitable properties for low carbon technologies such as rooftop solar, heat pumps and EV chargers. In a similar vein is Cambridgeshire Climate Emergency, a network of Community Groups across Cambridgeshire driving rapid transformation to achieve net-zero carbon through the mapping of renewable energy projects across the Cambridgeshire area such as Solar, wind and EV charging points.

Finally, ODI Leeds, Northern Power Grid and Element Energy have created a regionalised interpretation of future energy scenarios, mapping out potential pathways for reaching net zero by 2050. These pathways are split into three key categories: heat, transport, and generation and storage. 

Other notable projects include: