We need to make big changes to the way we generate, store, and use energy if we are going to meet the UK’s net zero commitments, and stop runaway climate change.

Project Local Energy Oxfordshire (LEO) was one of three smart local energy system demonstrator projects in the UK which sought to progress the local energy system by replicating the electricity system of the future in Oxfordshire. It was a collaborative and cross-sector initiative involving whole-system smart-grid trials to demonstrate some of the ways we could meet challenges in the transition to net zero and bring about social, economic, and environmental benefits for all.

Project LEO saw that a decentralised, or local energy solution, focused on balancing energy use at the grid edge, closest to homes and businesses, would be the most desirable approach to accelerating our transition to a zero-carbon energy system.

Find out more about Project LEO

Key Outputs

Project LEO ran trials in Oxfordshire to understand how new technologies and services, particularly at the ‘edge’ of the network – closest to the point where people are using energy – could benefit local people, communities, and the energy system.

This cross sector collaborative project built a broad range of reliable evidence of the technological, market and social conditions needed for a greener, more flexible and fair electricity system. It also developed an understanding of what changes need to happen within national and local policy to enable this to happen. Project LEO demonstrated how a smart, local balanced energy system could bring social, economic, and environmental benefits for all.

  • Tested new market and flexibility models – explored new products and services that created commercial opportunities for everyone to benefit from the way we generate, store, and use energy in our homes, businesses, and communities.
  • Advanced the capabilities of networks to manage smart, renewable, and storage technologies – learnt what needs to happen to our electricity networks to make them ready for a change to a smart local energy system.
  • Facilitated local participation in the energy system – ensured that individuals, households, and organisations are part of the energy transition.
Find out more about Project LEO's achievements

Current Status

The Future Oxfordshire Partnership is working closely with its partners to progress towards a zero-carbon energy system. The Net Zero Route Map and Action Plan (NZRMAP) work is informed by the findings of Project LEO, with Local Area Energy Planning (LAEP) one of the key workstreams within it.

The Local Energy Oxfordshire (LEO) LAEP+ mapping tool developed through Project LEO provides key data and insight to inform local area energy planning, while insights from the various LEO asset and place-based trials offer ideas for innovative decentralised, local energy solutions.

Related News

Future Oxfordshire Partnership Advocates for Urgent Action on Grid Constraints Hindering Net Zero Goals

June 30, 2023

The Future Oxfordshire Partnership, a committee of Oxfordshire's six local authorities working with key strategic partners working to deliver a sustainable future for the county, calls to address critical concerns hindering net zero ambitions in the region.


Future Oxfordshire Partnership Embarks on Ambitious Net Zero Journey

March 31, 2023

The Future Oxfordshire Partnership has endorsed five workstreams of the Net Zero Route Map and Action Plan, setting out the path to a net zero future for the county.


Oxfordshire Councils agree new approach to co-ordinating planning in county

September 27, 2022

On Wednesday 27 September, following the cessation of work on the Oxfordshire Plan 2050, the Future Oxfordshire Partnership agreed a new approach to co-ordinating planning across the county by updating the remit of the Oxfordshire Plan Advisory Group.

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