Moves to improve access to national grid announced

Moves aimed at making it easier to connect renewable energy to the National Grid have been announced by the Government. Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband said the shake-up would help new projects waiting for a date to feed electricity into the grid to get out of the "queue" and would particularly help renewable energy such as wind farms.

Moves aimed at making it easier to connect renewable energy to the National Grid have been announced by the Government. Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband said the shake-up would help new projects waiting for a date to feed electricity into the grid to get out of the "queue" and would particularly help renewable energy such as wind farms.

 

Around 200 projects are waiting to be connected to the grid with capacity for 60 gigawatts (GW) of new generation - 17 GW from renewable sources. The Government announced last summer that it wanted to reform the previous "first come first served" system of grid connection, meaning that some wind farms were given connection dates years after when they were due to start producing electricity.

Miliband said: "Access to the electricity grid has been one of the key barriers to the generation of renewable energy in this country. We are determined to resolve this issue. That is why we took powers to do so in the Energy Act and today we are setting out our proposals.

 

"We need these new projects to get hooked up to the grid as soon as they are ready, both to help tackle climate change and secure our future energy supplies. "The Government will do whatever is necessary to bring about the transition to a low carbon economy and to give investors the certainty they need so that new renewable energy generation is built."

 

For the first time, the Government will be making the detailed reforms to grid access rules that are necessary to overcome the delays. Previously, reforms were proposed by the industry and then approved or rejected by the regulator, Ofgem. The Department of Energy and Climate Change said it was consulting over the next three months on three options for how the new system will work.

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