Challenging the networks
As part of the RIIO2 price controls set out by Ofgem, network operators are required to set up independently chaired customer engagement groups (CEGs). As part of our Utility of the Future campaign, Network caught up with the chairs of four of these groups to find out more about their role and how they challenge the networks.
Network Awards 2020 open for entries
Following a successful inaugural year in 2019, the Network Awards will return on 17th March 2020, shining a light once more on the good work taking place across the UK's energy networks, their supply chains and stakeholders.
NPG appoints McCracken as chair of CEG
Northern Powergrid has appointed Justin McCracken as the chair of its new customer engagement group (CEG).
Connection options highlighted in ENA consultation
Standardising the way connection requests are handled across all network operators is something that is being considered as part of a consultation on application interactivity and connection queue management.
Customers overcharged by £24bn due to regulator error, Citizens Advice claims
Regulators have allowed water, energy, broadband and telephone networks to overcharge customers by £24.1 billion over the past 15 years, according to research carried out by Citizens Advice.
Drone project begins flight trials on energy network assets
A project, exploring how drone technology can be used to inspect network infrastructure, is set to begin conducting trials on both the electricity and gas networks this spring.
Technology & Operations
NIC challenges government to make infrastructure commitments
The chair of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) has called on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to use this autumn's Spending Review to commit to a once-in-a-generation transformation of the UK's transport, energy and technology networks.
Dealing with weather events
Alex Prentice, sector lead for utilities at Huntswood, examines how networks can prepare for a significant rise in customer complaints and queries around extreme weather events.
Enabling the smart grid
Stephen Harper, head of business development, commercial for SCISYS - discusses the transition of distribution network operators (DNOs) to distribution system operators (DSOs) and the smart grid.
Protecting physical assets
Cyber security may be high on the agendas of energy network companies. But they also need to remember that physical risks to their infrastructure are also a very real threat. What can they do to prevent uncontrolled access, and protect their physical assets? Risk professionals from network companies met at a roundtable event hosted by Network, in association with Abloy, to find out.
Unlocking the value of flexibility for networks
As flexibility procurement becomes a crucial tool for distribution network operators (DNOs), energy users are presented with a new opportunity, writes Andrew McKenna, commercial manager at Northern Powergrid, who is leading the development of the company's flexibility services implementation.
Scottish Government releases its 2030 vision for networks
The Scottish Government has released its vision for Scotland's electricity and gas networks.
The increasing threat of cyber-attacks
There is no doubt that cyber-attacks on energy companies and infrastructure have increased in scope and severity over the past decade. Ben Hargreaves provides an overview of this important subject area and looks at what can be done to keep energy networks secure.
Networks respond to NIC Call for Ideas
Britain's energy network companies have announced the next steps of the gas and electricity Network Innovation Competition (NIC) Call for Ideas.
Getting regulation right
Flexibility and the DSO business model was the topic of discussion at a recent roundtable hosted by Network and Oracle. With work now well underway on the second set of RIIO price controls, speakers were keen to talk about the impact of regulation on the transformation of networks.
David Spillett, head of safety, health and environment at the Energy Networks Association (ENA), talks about why safety, both for staff and the public, is the highest priority for network companies.
Liam O'Sullivan, head of capital programme delivery at UK Power Networks, discusses the importance of skills and where the industry's future talent might come from.
Quality apprenticeships for networks
Dr Jacqueline Hall, associate director of the Energy & Utilities Independent Assessment Service (EUIAS), discusses the importance of assessing apprentices working in the sector.
Confusion over EV charging network speeds
A new report warns that widespread confusion over how fast electric vehicles can be 'refuelled' could be undermining efforts to provide an adequate public chargepoint network.
Innovation for the nation
Decarbonisation is changing the energy system rapidly and the way in which energy is produced, supplied and consumed is already very different from only a few years ago. Randolph Brazier, head of innovation at the Energy Networks Association (ENA), looks at some of the key trends in this space.
Ofgem to open tenders for offshore wind power links
Ofgem is inviting companies to bid for ownership of the electricity transmission link to the 1.2 gigawatt (GW) Hornsea 1 wind farm project off the coast of Lincolnshire and Yorkshire.
The data revolution for asset management
Data is already shaping our world, but how we use it could revolutionise asset management. Phil Dingle, marketing director at Lucy Electric, discusses the issue.
Consultation launched on ‘Future Worlds’ for smart grid
The Energy Networks Association (ENA) is seeking views on five 'Future Worlds' which represent a major change from the way electricity networks operate today.
Flexibility is key
As networks seek to respond to changing operational demands and the ongoing drive for efficiency, flexibility is key.
Grid reliability and the control and protection of assets remain critical issues for networks. Ben Hargreaves reports.
Technology & Operations
Looking after your assets
As UK network companies start to develop optimised business plans for RIIO2, Pete Massey, founder and director of Upcurve Limited, looks at how French transmission system operator RTE adopted a new and holistic way of thinking to drive its asset management strategies.
John Parsons, networks portfolio manager at BEAMA and a Network editorial board member, looks at the subject of network charging.
Dealing with data
Network Magazine and Cyient recently hosted a roundtable discussion where the subject of proactive data management being the key to the future energy system was discussed. Tom Grimwood reports.
Technology & Operations
Digitalising the network
The digital transformation of distribution networks to connect and monitor assets is not a new concept. But while the proliferation of connected devices enables organisations to gather data from the network, are UK operators doing enough to harness the opportunities of digitalisation? Siemens' Victor Sellwood - senior consultant, energy business advisory - speaks to Network.
Policy & Regulation
Utility Week Live: Call for multi-utility regulator
The creation of a multi-utility regulator and network regime would help improve collaboration across sectors, lower costs and simplify the industry for consumers. That's the view of Laura Sandys, CEO of Challenging Ideas, who spoke at this week's Utility Week Live during a discussion on the next round of RIIO price controls.
Technology & Operations
Burns & McDonnell selected to advise on SEND project
Burns & McDonnell has been named technical advisor for Europe's first Smart Energy Network Demonstrator (SEND) at Keele University.