Replace National Grid with independent operator, says Energy and Climate Change Committee

Written by Liam Kirkaldy on 17 June 2016 in News

Energy and Climate Change Committee cites difficulties facing small-scale low carbon generators

Pylon - credit: PA

A House of Commons Committee has recommended the National Grid be replaced by a US-style system with an independent operator.

Finding that small-scale low carbon electricity generators face “long and uncertain queues to connect to the grid”, the Energy and Climate Change Committee said system operation should be transferred from the National Grid to an Independent System Operator at national level and Distribution System Operators at the regional level.

But the National Grid rejected the report’s recommendations, saying a switch to the US model could create disruption in the energy sector and pose risks to security of supply.


Scotland hits 2020 emissions reduction target six years early

Fracking moratorium is "holding back" oil and gas industry, says Tory MSP Murdo Fraser

Parliamentary sketch: MSPs make waves

The Committee also warned that development of energy storage technology is being hindered by “legislative and regulatory inertia”.

Committee chair Angus MacNeil, SNP, said: “National Grid's technical expertise in operating the national energy system must be weighed against its potential conflicts of interest. The Independent System Operator model has worked in the USA. It is time for it to be brought to these shores.

“Local energy is here, with astonishing growth in generation connected directly to regional networks. Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) remain somewhat blind to their energy flows and passive in managing them. DNOs must transition to a more active role as Distribution System Operators so that they can use smart technologies to manage ever-more complicated energy flows.”

The report also urges the Government to establish a regulatory framework – overseen by Ofgem – to encourage investment in district heating and complement existing voluntary schemes in safeguarding consumers.

The National Grid is a private company listed on the London Stock Exchange.



Related Articles

Campaigners urge ministers to ensure National Investment Bank boosts low carbon infrastructure
15 December 2017

Environmental campaigners welcomed plans for £340m in capital funding for the National Investment Bank, while urging ministers to ensure it helps develop Scotland’s low carbon...

Brexit poses a “fundamental challenge” to the Scottish renewables sector, claims Alex Salmond
1 December 2017

Highlighting the role of the EU in providing research funding and fostering free movement of people, the former First Minister used a speech at the University of Dundee to argue the decision to...

Is Scotland ready for low emission zones?
27 November 2017

The Programme for Government saw a raft of green transport announcements, but how will low emission zones work in practice? 

Share this page