July 1 (Renewables Now) - UK energy regulator Ofgem on Wednesday presented its five-year vision for local energy grids that supports the transition to net zero.
The plan is the regulator’s draft determinations for the price control covering the five-year period to March 31, 2028.
The proposed package amounts to GBP 20.9 billion (USD 25.3bn/EUR 24.4bn) to operate, maintain and enhance the local grids and includes baseline investment of GBP 2.7 billion in network upgrades to back the uptake of electrical vehicles (EVs), heat pumps (HPs) and the addition of more local, low-carbon generation such as solar and wind.
Ofgem said the proposals will boost grid capacity, improve resilience and prepare for increased generation of greener, home-grown energy, which has become the cheaper and more secure option.
Under the plans, increased investment for net zero will be delivered through tough efficiency targets on networks and lower returns for investors without increasing network charges on consumer bills.
“These are challenging times, and this is the path out of relying on expensive and polluting imported fossil fuels and moving to a home-grown energy system, that exploits the best of modern technology to level out demand and reduce costs for consumers,” said Ofgem chief executive Jonathan Brearley.
In Great Britain, there are 14 electricity distribution network operators (DNOs) managed by six companies. A consultation on the draft determinations will run till August 25.
(GBP 1 = USD 1.210/EUR 1.165)