ENA delivers positive response to BEIS/Ofgem letter

After receiving a joint letter from the government and the energy regulator, the DNO trade body delivered a positive but robust response.

The letter to the Energy Networks Association, jointly signed by Dan Monzani and Frances Warburton from BEIS and Ofgem, was delivered in July this year. While praising the work already undertaken by the ENA’s on its Open Networks project, it also called for more “tangible results.” 

The critical call to action within the letter stated: “The ENA Open Networks Project is a useful vehicle for improved coordination across network and system operators and for delivering change as part of the energy transition. We welcome the progress made to date, including their recent commitments, and are keen that progress continues and tangible changes are implemented.”

Now, the ENA has responded with an open letter of its own, reinforcing its commitment to the Open Networks project and to a transition to Net Zero (also the subject of a recent BEAMA report).  It also thanked BEIS and Ofgem for its continued support. It then goes on to clarify changes to the Project work programme for the remainder of 2019 and its plan for 2020. 

In particular, the ENA highlighted the “tangible results” it intends to deliver in 2020, which include:

  • Six-monthly monitoring of Open Networks implementation outcomes and Flexibility Commitments
  • Indicative times of defined outcomes and planned timescales for the 2020 work
  • Raising appropriate change within the electricity network companies and codes
  • Identification of any barriers to development where ENA may need Ofgem or BEIS policy intervention

The ENA response goes on to say: “We appreciate your input to date and the recognition of the value that the Open Networks Project has provided for delivering change as part of the energy transition…  While we are not formally consulting on this letter response, we would welcome any input from stakeholders on how we have responded to the challenges set by Ofgem and BEIS in their letter and particularly what we will set as our priorities and development work for 2020 and beyond.”

In an annex to the letter, ENA provides greater detail into the areas where Open Networks activities have been re-prioritised to higher importance as a result of the BEIS/Ofgem comments.  Notably amongst these are:

  • Setting out a clear plan with ambitious timelines for identifying and delivering least regrets actions needed across all the Future Worlds.
  • Demonstrating transparent processes for evaluating flexibility tenders, ensuring outcomes are transparent, predictable and justified.
  • Providing clear information on current and future system needs in a consistent interoperable format, developed in consultation with stakeholders.

Improving the availability of network information in an interoperable format for planning and forecasting, such as load flow models; network headroom; asset data; and GIS data.