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Delivering a smart and secure electricity system: government consultation

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Mars
 Mars
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The government has announced the publication of its strategic plans aimed at advancing the development of a smart and secure electricity system. A significant component of this initiative mandates that, starting from 2026, all flexible electric heating technologies—including but not limited to heat pumps, storage heaters, and heat batteries—will be required to adhere to 'smart' standards. This entails the integration of secure two-way communication capabilities within these technologies, enabling them to receive and respond to external price signals effectively.

To this end, a consultation period has been opened, providing an opportunity for input and feedback on the proposed plans. The consultation period is scheduled to conclude on 11 June 2024.

Interested parties are encouraged to participate in this consultation process by submitting their responses through the following link: Delivering a Smart and Secure Electricity System Implementation.

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Abernyte
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Great smart meters for all...can't wait on them getting one to work in my rural idyll.


   
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Toodles
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@abernyte Well, anything is possible, after all, we have buses that run on cow poo.! Toodles

Toodles, 76 years young and hoping to see 100 and make some ROI on my renewable energy investment!


   
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(@eggnchips)
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@abernyte Ha! Can't see it happening in Wales. Where I live there is no

mobile phone coverage,
broadband,
mains-water,
gas,
drainage,
road services.
Still waiting for a working smart meter after two years.


   
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Transparent
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@eggnchips your location is still likely to attain access to the UK Smart Meter Network.

DESNZ opened a consultation on proposals to deliver access to remote locations on 12th Dec'23.
You can access the document from a link on that SEC page, although the consultation is now closed.

A number of further suggestions were put forward during the consultation period.
They will all need consideration by the Smart Energy Code for technical feasibility and security.

The amount of data which is transferred to/fro the Data Communications Company (DCC) and each Smart Meter is trivial.
It doesn't require the sort of speeds associated with broadband.

Save energy... recycle electrons!


   
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Transparent
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Delivering a Smart and Secure Electricity System is an ongoing program rather than a one-off consultation.

There was an earlier consultation round held in 2022.
The Government response to that round is available online and was released in March'23.
It is worthwhile reading that because it summarises the answers from respondents.

The Government Response document states that there were only 84 respondents, not all of whom provided feedback to all topics.
It wouldn't take many responses from Forum Members here to have considerable influence on the '24 consultation which is now live.

I thought the Government response lacked clear direction on matters which were influenced by the public.
They made vague comments on what might happen, whilst failing to change Government strategy to ensure that a positive outcome would be achieved.

image

I also objected to certain aspects of energy security, and raised those with my MP.
For obvious reasons I'm not going to elaborate on that in a public forum!

Let's remember that the Government Response to the current (2024) consultation will be made after the next general election.
There is likely to be a new Secretary of State in post at DESNZ,
and the new Independent System Operator and Planner will be in place to implement the proposals.

We need to respond to this Consultation with that in mind, rather than looking back on what's currently happening.

This post was modified 4 weeks ago by Transparent

Save energy... recycle electrons!


   
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(@ianmk13)
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At present, the focus of many people - I'm thinking of PV and domestic battery owners here - is on export limitation to the grid.  (Call me a cynic, but I have a suspicion that there are people who put as many PV panels on their roof that will fit and somehow circumvent any required export limitation.) There seems to be less notice of the fact that DNOs are reducing import capacity from 100A, where it is available, to 80A on an opportunity basis. For anyone with a home battery, an EV, an ASHP and well-equipped kitchen (including laundry) this could become an issue.  EV charger and battery management systems will mitigate this by reducing demand but it has the potential to curtail the availability of adequate EV charging and the benefits of a home battery, particularly where a ToU tariff is used.


   
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Toodles
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@ianmk13 Something I’ll have to watch carefully if and when they ‘update’ the electricity meter then! I imagine that they are still working on (is it 15 years?) a life where they must be replaced with new ones? We are all electric and have a G99 granted; I suspect that with 2 x Tesla Powerwalls, and an induction hob as well as an ASHP, we might struggle if they reduced us to an 80 amp maximum supply. Regards, Toodles.

Toodles, 76 years young and hoping to see 100 and make some ROI on my renewable energy investment!


   
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Transparent
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Posted by: @ianmk13

here seems to be less notice of the fact that DNOs are reducing import capacity from 100A, where it is available, to 80A on an opportunity basis.

Do you have an evidence of that practice?

It isn't NGED's policy in the four regions for which they hold a Distribution Licence.
That includes the regions where you and I each live, Ian.

When someone makes an LCT (Low Carbon Technology) Application to NGED for either an EV charger or a heat-pump, they check to see if the demand is likely to exceed 80A (on a house with a 100A Service Fuse). If so, then they assess the substation feed status and might recommend an upgrade to a 3-phase supply.

 

Posted by: @toodles

I imagine that they are still working on (is it 15 years?) a life where they must be replaced with new ones?

The service life for each device within a Smart Meter installation is assessed separately.
Degradation differs according to the design and manufacture.

The usual Service Life which is applied when a device is first approved for use is 10-years.
That is re-evaluated as the 10-year limit is approached.

DCC maintains the Central Products List (CPL), which is currently at version 3.001, and the Firmware Information Repository (FIR).

The SEC (Smart Energy Code) receive applications from Manufacturers who require an Assurance Certificate for any new device.

The NCSC (National Cyber Security Centre) is responsible for carrying out a risk analysis as each device approaches the expiry date of its CPA (Central Products Assurance certificate).
They can then extend its CPA by a number of years.

Unless a Smart Metering Device has a current Assurance Certificate on the CPL, DCC cannot communicate with it.

The system is dynamic, proactive and subject to challenge by DCC or the SEC.
Increasing fault levels with any device can cause its Assurance Certificate to be withdrawn.

Save energy... recycle electrons!


   
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Toodles
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@transparent Thank you Transparent. Regards, Toodles.

Toodles, 76 years young and hoping to see 100 and make some ROI on my renewable energy investment!


   
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(@ianmk13)
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Posted by: @transparent

Posted by: @ianmk13

here seems to be less notice of the fact that DNOs are reducing import capacity from 100A, where it is available, to 80A on an opportunity basis.

Do you have an evidence of that practice?

Here is NGED's policy document: NGED Standardisation of Fusing to 80A

My 100A service head was replaced with an 80A one last year after I rashly reported an unsafe condition in my meter cupboard. The situation is also now confirmed by my G99 Connection Confirmation letter that I finally received this week, which states a Maximum Import Capacity of 18.4kVA. The service head was replaced without any discussion of the plans I had at the time and just before I had my EV charger installed, but I only noticed a couple of months ago. It appears that I was naive to assume that the existence of a 100A fuse implied that 23kVA was there for the taking 😐.

Of course, I can take a chance that the fuse won't blow by taking more than I should 😉  

 


   
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Toodles
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@ianmk13 Before he was taken to court, we had a neighbour who was very interested in horticulture - he was a specialist with just one plant in mind, cannabis. The meter was bypassed and almost every upstairs room was filled with plants and all the paraphernalia to light and heat the pots. He didn’t have any problem with the fuse rating as he just bypassed the meter and wiring altogether! There was a raid one Saturday morning whilst I was providing technical services for a number of university degree congregations so I saw nothing of this but, the road was closed off at both ends with an ambulance, a number of police cars, fire appliances, British Gas and technical representatives from our DNO present; instructions were given to residents to shut their doors and windows whilst the incident was dealt with. Regards, Toodles.

This post was modified 4 weeks ago by Toodles

Toodles, 76 years young and hoping to see 100 and make some ROI on my renewable energy investment!


   
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