UK Power Networks is committing £12 million in funding across 28 locations in southeast and east England to start a new market for energy resources to sell flexibility services to network operators and lower costs to customers.
The company will use flexibility services by buying generation or storage capacity to manage peaks in demand, rather than spending on large-scale projects to build new infrastructure.
Asset-owners have until 12 March to register to tender and UK Power Networks is reducing the minimum capacity threshold from 100kW to 50kW to allow more providers to participate. An auction to bid for up to four contracts to provide flexibility services from winter 2019 onwards will be held later in late March.
UK Power Networks has allocated the £12 million pot across 28 locations according to network requirements across the different locations. The funding is to purchase the flexible energy output the resources produce.
Piclo, an online platform which matches energy providers’ resources with the network operator’s local need for flexible energy resources, will host the bidding process.
Sotiris Georgiopoulos, head of smart grid development at UK Power Networks, said: “It is early days for the flexibility market, but we’re fully committed to it because we know that it’s the right thing to do for our customers. The sums we’re investing will ultimately save customers money by extending the life of our existing infrastructure.
“Could you reduce your consumption or increase generation on instruction at peak times? If so and you’re a generator or developer with assets in any of our 28 locations, or if you can install new assets by winter 2020-21, then we’d be really happy to speak to you about how you can take part.
“We’re setting out to develop an open and transparent new market that will make our network stronger and more resilient while delivering value for our customers.”