Both Ofgem and the National grid have announced reforms to the UK’s grid. Ofgem revealed new rules to speed up electricity connections for viable projects, whilst removing stalled developers from the grid queue. Additionally, the National Grid announced plans to accelerate up to 20GW of grid connections across its transmission and distribution networks.

Ofgem

Ofgem, the UK government’s electricity regulator, is moving away from the existing ‘first come, first served’ based system. This led to long queues for energy projects waiting for grid connections. The UK grid’s operator, National Grid ESO, will enforce the new queue management, starting on 27th November 2023. It will terminate stalled projects that are blocking the queue for high-voltage transmission lines and means ready-to-go generation and storage projects can be fast tracked. Initial terminations are expected to occur from 2024. This announcement follows the Ofgem CEO, Jonathan Brearley, commenting in May 2023 that the ‘reform to the connections system is vital to unlock new investment and hit national targets: 50GW of offshore wind capacity by 2030 and 70GW from solar by 2035.’

The National Grid

The National Grid, on the 6th of November, announced plans to accelerate up to 20GW of grid connections across its transmission and distribution networks. Within the transmission network, a new approach will grant 19 battery energy storage projects, equating to a collective 10GW, earlier connection dates. The advancement eliminates the necessity for non-essential engineering tasks before linking storage. It will result in an average acceleration of four years compared to their existing agreements. The National Grid will offer accelerated transmission connections to a further 10GW of clean energy projects in the new year.

Rho’s Evaluation

Delays in UK grid…

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Image credit: Adobe Stock

Sources: Ofgem, National Grid