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ADE supportive of UK government plan, but with caveat

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The British government launched its Smart Systems and Flexibility Plan on Monday, unveiling a strategy aimed at delivering a consumer-led low-carbon energy system.

The plan has been broadly welcomed, and although the Association for Decentralised Energy is supportive, their director, Dr Tim Rotheray,says the upcoming Targeted Charging Review is vital if the merits of embedded generators are to be rightfully recognised.


 The plan’s aims include the removing of barriers to smart technologies, including storage, facilitating smart homes and businesses, and building more flexibility into the market.

It is hoped that the plan can empower consumers to take advantage of when energy is cheapest, and help to save as much as £40 billion in network costs by 2050.

Smarter energy technologies and processes could also deliver new services, allowing consumers greater control over how they use energy while reducing the cost of their bills.  

A key aim of the report relies on Ofgem’s forthcoming Targeted Charging Review looking at how electricity networks are paid for. This review follows the Ofgem review of the way local generators are to pay for the transmission network (so called embedded benefits) and the decision to cut these benefits by as much as 93%.

Ofgem’s approach and the outcome of the review of embedded benefits has been universally criticised by the decentralised energy sector. The Government is putting significant weight on this review wo

rking for its smart, flexible electricity system vision.

 The Targeted Charging Review will be key to determining if the regulator can effectively reflect the changing energy system and the needs of users, according to ADE Director Dr Tim Rotheray.

“This report is vital, setting out Government’s vision of a flexible power system that gives customers greater control over their energy and promotes cost-effective decarbonisation.

“The emphasis on removing barriers to market for demand response providers is particularly important to achieve these aims. Government and industry must now work together to ensure these actions are implemented effectively.”

“The ADE’s work on a Code of Conduct for Demand Response is a key piece in the jigsaw, helping to ensure that customers have confidence in the new services on offer to them.

“The review of network charging is critically important. We need a rigorous review to ensure that local generators and flexibility providers are fairly compensated for the value they provide. Recent work on the embedded benefits has damaged confidence among the decentralised energy industry and this review needs to be holistic and focused on all energy customers.”

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