Local Energy Systems

Distribution Network Operators

Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) own and control the electricity distribution network, and connect generators, suppliers, energy users and consumers. If you are planning a generation facility to put power into the grid, or if you are building out a development that will increase demand on it, you should get in touch with your DNO at the earliest opportunity. This will help you understand grid connection availability, capacity and cost and help DNOs to plan ahead and make sufficient capacity available to meet your needs.

CLICK HERE to download a ready reference of DNO coverage of local authority areas in the region.

Scroll down to read more about how DNOs in the regional are supporting local authorities and other local stakeholders with their planning for the transition to net zero, and how you can get in touch with them. DNOs are also keen to support local authority development of local area energy planning.

If you are a local authority or public sector organisation in the Greater South East region, and would like help from the Net Zero Hub to make an introduction to your DNO please contact us: info@gsenetzerohub.org.uk.

National Grid

National Grid (formerly Western Power Distribution) has appointed a new Strategic Engagement Officer for the East Midlands, to provide support and guidance to regional stakeholders that are developing local area energy plans. National Grid wants to take account of the net zero ambitions of local authorities within their future network planning and ensure that sufficient capacity is provided.

CLICK HERE to contact the new Strategic Engagement Officer directly.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN)  

Local Area Energy Planning: Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks is supporting local authorities with the development of local area energy planning. SSEN is now having introductory meetings and demonstrating its LAEP+ tool. You can access an online demonstration of the planning tool being used for EV siting here. Contact whole.system.distribution@sse.com to get involved.

Network Data: SSEN has a Tools and Maps website page, which provides links to network maps, GIS, demand calculators, and other materials.

Local Energy Net Zero Accelerator (LENZA): The LENZA tool is SSEN’s new geospatial planning software. LENZA provides data on network constraints to inform the development of local area energy planning by local authorities and decisions about where to install new energy assets. Click here for more information about LENZA.

SSEN’s Network Development Report: The report, which outlines investment over the next five years in its southern licence area is available here.

Other support: For queries about imminent connections (0-2 years) or capacity issues, contact the Connections Team commercial.contracts@sse.com. For an in-depth conversation about specific projects, book onto a Connections Surgery. For a discussion about longer-term strategic planning (5+ years) please contact whole.system.distribution@sse.com.

UK Power Networks (UKPN)

Your Local Net Zero Hub: UKPN has a free self-service digital tool, which aims to support the development of local area energy planning. See further information and sign up to the UKPN Your Local Net Zero Hub facility here.

Data for local area energy planning: Click on the following link to access the dedicated open data page to local area energy planning. You can give UKPN feedback about what other data themes, uses cases or datasets you wish to see evolved or included here.

Sharing Net Zero Plans: UKPN shares insights and forecasts to help climate action plans through its Distribution Future Energy Scenarios (DFES) publication. The forecasts create a picture of how the energy system might look by 2050 against a range of local carbon technologies, like electric vehicles, solar and heating solutions. UKPN has developed the Share your Net Zero plans widget that allows you to choose a parameter from the Distribution Future Energy Scenarios and enter estimates of how you plan to reach your targets. Sharing your plans with UKPN will help to guide the DNO’s network investment plans to support your local decarbonisation objectives.

Contact UKPN about net zero planning: You can book a meeting with UKPN to discuss your net zero targets and local net zero plans here. If you have any questions or clarifications please email UKPN here.

Flexibility: The UKPN Flexibility Hub provides information on flexibility, which is the ability to change generation or consumption patterns to support the electricity system. Participating homes and businesses can earn payments while saving costs for everyone and helping more low carbon technologies connect to the network. Explore further information on active competitions and flexibility opportunities, and register for tenders on Piclo.

Contact UKPN about projects, connections and installations: If you are considering the installation of equipment to generate or store electricity, like wind turbines, solar panels, batteries or combined heat and power units, further information and contact details are available here: Distribution energy resources | UK Power Networks. If you want to discuss your project and get support and advice before submitting an application, you can email UKPN here  to book a slot. Further information is also available here: DER surgeries | UK Power Networks.

Transition from DNO to DSO

Increases in distributed generation will require Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) to take on system operator functions, such as active network management, using new-technology and real-time data to make interventions on the network. This is referred to as a transition from DNO to Distribution System Operator (DSO)

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