Distribution network operator Northern Powergrid, which runs the power grid in the North East, Yorkshire and north Lincolnshire areas, has unveiled its plans to create a smart grid that puts customers at the heart of its operations.

The firm revealed that it wants to establish a new energy market, whereby homeowners not only receive the power they need, but are also able to make money from the likes of solar panels, electric vehicles and home batteries.

Such plans could encourage more homeowners in the region to explore solar PV installations to help meet some of their energy needs.

Patrick Erwin, policy and markets director at the firm, said that the project is about helping their customers buy their energy as cheaply as possible, while offering them opportunities to sell services. This will help “balance the network and make it more efficient,” he explained.

“The transition to a reliable, cost-effective, low-carbon network offers huge opportunities for the economic prosperity of our region,” Mr Erwin commented.

Given that the government is placing a strong emphasis on clean growth within its Industrial Strategy, this could be something that more areas of the UK start to explore.

One region that’s already embracing green energy technology is Cornwall, with Business Green recently noting that this area could become something of a model for how to roll this kind of technology out to other parts of the UK.

A scheme in the Scilly Isles, designed to help the islands become an independent hub for green energy, has won praise recently. The island community is aiming to use the likes of solar panels, energy storage, heat pumps and electric vehicles to help realise its vision, with the Internet of Things helping to link everything together.