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Brexit, Energy, Data, and You: Finding Unity in a Complex World

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Brexit reminds us that in a world of increasing fragmentation, it’s important to leverage unifying technologies that simplify and provide visibility.

[fullwidth backgroundcolor=”no” backgroundimage=”” backgroundrepeat=”no-repeat” backgroundposition=”left top” backgroundattachment=”scroll” bordersize=”0px” bordercolor=”” borderstyle=”” paddingtop=”0px” paddingbottom=”0px” paddingleft=”0px” paddingright=”0px” menu_anchor=”” class=”” id=””][fusion_text]When we woke to the news of Brexit this morning, we quickly got over our surprise and began thinking of how Brexit will affect the already complex problem of collecting utility data from sources all around the world. While the energy sector was far from the center of the Brexit debate, it could experience one of the greatest fallbacks from the decision.

According to Reuters, “UK wholesale power prices are higher than the EU average, partly because interconnections with other countries are able only to supply around 6 percent of peak electricity demand.” In an interesting (and a bit ironic) turn on the pricing / supply question in the UK, it seems that Brexit itself directly exacerbated this problem: according to the Financial Times, “Britons gathering round the television to watch the results of Thursday’s referendum on EU membership are set to trigger the biggest spike in night-time electricity demand ever seen in the UK, according to National Grid.”

What does the way forward look like for the UK, EU, and global energy markets (and the data driving decisions throughout)? Building interconnections with power networks in other European countries will only face more obstacles now that the UK no longer has direct influence on EU energy regulations.

Frequent fluctuations in energy tariffs and lack of a consistent, widespread energy supply will make aggregating and analyzing utility data an even more resource-intensive process. As Europe becomes more fragmented and less unified, it is important that the collection and management of energy data remains integrated and consolidated.

A global energy data standard will be particularly crucial for multinational corporations with locations throughout Europe and the rest of the world. It’s complex enough managing the disparate data formats of different providers within one country’s borders. This complexity compounds and spirals out of control the more locations you have across many borders, making global visibility into energy consumption and spend a nightmare, and sustainability reporting a manual patchwork not for the faint of heart.

If France and others begin to call it quits from the EU, the fragmentation of data sources will increase, making it ever-more crucial to have an efficient way to collect and standardize data automatically, without having to manually manage and keep track of data formats and semantics as they shift over time.

Time will tell how widespread the fallout will be, but in a world of increasing fragmentation, it’s important to leverage unifying technologies that simplify and provide visibility where there is none.[/fusion_text][/fullwidth]

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