Utility Week

UW 07 02 14 Uberflip

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utILIty WeeK | 7th - 13th February 2014 | 31 Community Disconnector Editor: Ellen Bennett, t: 01342 332084, e: ellen.bennett@fav-house.com; Energy editor: Megan Darby, t: 01342 332087, e: megan.darby@fav-house.com; Features editor: Karma Ockenden, t: 01342 332086, e: karma.ockenden@fav-house. com; Reporter: Mathew Beech, t: 01342 332082, e: mathew.beech@fav-house.com; Reporter: Conor McGlone, t: 01342 332083, e: conor.mcglone@fav-house.com; Production editor: Paul Newton, t: 01342 332085; Business development manager: Ed Roberts, t: 01342 332067, e: ed.roberts@fav-house.com; Sales executive: Nicky Shaw, t: 01342 332070, e: nicky.shaw@fav-house.com; Publisher: amanda barnes, e: amanda.barnes@fav-house.com. General enquiries: 01342 332000; Subscriptions: UK £577 per year, Overseas £689 per year, t: 01342 332011. ISSN: 1356-5532. Registered as a newspaper at the Post Office. Printed by: buxton Press, Palace road, buxton, Derbyshire SK17 6ae. Published by: Faversham house Ltd, Windsor Court, Wood Street, east Grinstead, West Sussex rh19 1uZ 'Open the pod bay doors, Hal' Goodness gracious but aren't we all clever? Disconnector thinks the human race in general – and Western civilisation in particular – deserves a big pat on the back. The latest development in the remorseless march to making our world that much smarter (and rendering it less and less necessary to actually interact with it) is an app that lets your smartphone control your home energy system. It is said it can save you as much as £400 a year on your energy bill. Clearly the home in question would have to be smart-enabled, with heating, lighting and water remotely controlled and the whole shebang connected to the internet. Aer that, sheer clever- ness allows the device to antici- pate your needs and control your home environment accordingly. Using GPS technology, phones now know exactly where you are and, using that knowledge, systems can anticipate when you are likely to get home. Been to the gym? The system knows there's no need to heat the water for a bath because you always take a shower. Working late unexpectedly? It turns on the heating only when you're half an hour from home. It will even take account of the local weather forecast and adjust itself according to expected temperatures. Now, that's what you call smart. I mean, surely there couldn't be any danger in stuff- Disconnector ing our homes full of remote control electronic devices and then handing over control of them to a smart machine? Got any spam in your fridge? As if to illustrate these dangers, Disconnector was tickled to learn from the BBC about a web attack in which a gang had cre- ated some malicious code that had installed itself on 100,000 smart devices such as home routers, media PCs, smart TV sets – even fridges. The aim was to get all these devices to gener- ate spam emails. The attack started in Decem- ber and was discovered by elec- tronic security firm Proofpoint at the beginning of January, by which time 750,000 messages had been sent. Criminals manage to gain access to smart home gadg- ets because most people are unaware that they are virtually computers in their own right and should be password protected like your home PC. Oen, consumers simply leave the security settings on default, or switched to "off ". Proofpoint general manager David Knight said attacks such as this would become much more routine as homes and fur- nishings got smarter and were put online. So the next time you get an email offering to sell you a bucket ful of Viagra or telling you how to enlarge your penis, it could be from the fridge. Inductive buses The stuttering take-up of elec- tric vehicles has been given a boost with the news that Milton Keynes is to introduce a fleet of eight electric buses to run on a 25km route between the city centre and the suburbs of Wolverton and Bletchley. The buses have been built by the UK's Wrightbus and will operate as part of a five-year trial starting this month, led by the European division of Japanese company Mitsui and UK engineering group Arup. As well as being charged at the depot overnight, the buses will receive ten-minute booster charges at the start and end of every journey from inductive plates buried in the road. Readers may be more famil- iar with inductive charging as the method used to charge electric toothbrushes. It uses magnetic fields to generate a charge, so there's no need for any physical contact between the charger and the device. Ideal for electric toothbrushes. And, apparently, buses. Disconnector has to admit he's impressed, but there is a niggle in the back of his mind about the wisdom of sticking metre-square plates in the road and wiring them up to the grid. If things go wrong, it could be spectacular. At the very least, the magnets could lock some pensioner in his mobility scooter to the road all night. The Daily Mail would not be forgiving. 3,580 Average circulation Jan–Dec 2012 Subscriptions: UK £577 per year, Overseas £689 per year fhcustomerservices@ abacusemedia.com Damian Kahya @damiankahya Pro or anti nuclear, the EC's take on the hinkley deal suggests the bigger question of how did DECC get it so wrong? Elaine Coles @Waterbriefing Ofwat PR14 changes take water sector rating to 'negative' – increased business risk "now a real prospect" Bryony Worthington @bryworthington Wheels coming off Gov's Energy Bill? State Aid problems at Hinkley, Eggborough closing, EDF investing in old coal Kevin Hagen @kevinhagen #utilities to see more change in the next 10 yrs than in the previous 100! Distributed Generation 3WhitehallPlace @3WhitehallPlace Hinkley Point C update. De Rivaz is demand- ing Somerset leaves the EU if the Commission doesn't approve our subsidy support Tim Probert @TimProbert Consumers would be much better off with loan guarantee & no CfD for HPC. But would EDF proceed without CfD given the EPR reac- tor is a lemon? Jessica Lennard @JessicaLennard #2020Group idea to rename 'waste' policy 'resources' & move from DEFRA to BIS is excellent. Waste has been overlooked for too long. Johann Tasker @johanntasker Water abstraction reform is "good idea if we can get it right," says show of hands among farmers meeting in Essex, UK's driest county. Dominic Morgan @business_4media DECC is up against it - Fewer than 10% plan to do ANYTHING to make their homes more energy efficient: EnergyBillRevolution @EnergyBillRev BOOM! 512,259 people just got the #coldhomesweek message calling on MPs to end fuel poverty- help us make change here http://www.energybillrevolution.org Top Tweets

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