Developing the service involved customer consultations, including joint consultations with DNO National Grid Electricity Distribution. Image: Field.

From May, UK Power Networks’ (UKPN) distribution system operator (DSO) customers will be given an Advanced Curtailment Report. It will help new renewable energy providers by offering more data and support around curtailment through the connections process.

The Advanced Curtailment Report helps inform decisions about how and where to locate new energy assets. For each site, it will provide a breakdown of curtailment for each network constraint that could have an impact and how much impact a potential asset could have on each network asset.

Developing the service involved customer consultations, including joint consultations with DNO National Grid Electricity Distribution.

As well as benefiting future connections customers, UKPN believes the service will work to bring renewable energy onto the network faster and at a lower cost. The report will also provide information about other sites ahead of customers in the queue.

That will include the capacity, technology and application date, as well as the ratings of the constraint linked to the site. The DSO will further provide detailed, half-hourly data on exactly when and by how much a site is forecasted to be curtailed.

Sotiris Georgiopoulos, director of DSO at UK Power Networks, said: “We are making the connections process clearer, simpler, and faster for customers, whilst providing the support they need to make informed decisions around where and when they might be able to take advantage of earlier energisation.

“Using real-time data, we are enabling customers to make more informed decisions about the location and scale of new projects. They can confidently embark on their journey towards a sustainable future, supported by UK Power Networks DSO every step of the way.” 

After the service was tested with an example report, new projects director at Low Carbon, Ed Birkett, said: “These new curtailment reports are a step change in the data that UK Power Networks is providing to its customers. The new data will definitely allow customers to make a more informed choice on whether or not to accept and progress with connection offers.”

Curtailment of energy resources continues to be an ongoing issue within the GB energy network. With many generators wondering why renewable energy is often curtailed, increasing transparency on the subject could support decision makers.

Solutions are emerging to mitigate curtailment costs. In January, renewable energy infrastructure firm Field announced the acquisition of Scottish Holmston and Drum Farm battery energy storage sites from RES. It will contribute a range of services to the grid, including balancing electricity supply and demand, in an area that suffers a lot of curtailment.

A report commissioned by Scottish Renewables argued that the substantial increase in renewable deployment over the last 20 years, paired with what Scottish Renewables called “a decade of under-investment in the UK’s electricity transmission network” has created a system which is “no longer delivering good value”.  

Data from the Advanced Curtailment Report should prove an important step in changing this.

This article was originally published on Current±.