Solar Energy UK Response to BEIS Call for Evidence
A broader review of Transmission Network Use of System (TNUoS) charging is very welcome and needed, and we appreciate Ofgem’s engagement with the industry on this important issue.
There is a strong case to review the transmission charging methodology to ensure that development of renewable energy generation is not discouraged in locations with an abundance of renewable resources to meet our net zero obligations most effectively.
We have long been raising concerns about the proposal to extend TNUoS charging to Small Distributed Generation (SDG). As set out, the proposed methodology for charging TNUoS to SDG would have significantly disincentivised solar generation projects in the north of England and in Scotland particularly, which runs directly counter to the Government’s intentions of levelling up.
We welcomed the withdrawal of this proposal from the Access SCR minded to and a review of how charging arrangements would impact SDG should be in scope of any TNUoS review. As it stands, the methodology for calculating TNUoS charges continues to disproportionately impact renewable generation assets, and solar and storage especially. The TNUoS regime is no longer fit for purpose to deliver the UK Government’s net zero targets.
Analysis from the Climate Change Committee and other independent bodies shows that the UK will need to deploy at least 40GW of solar by 2030 if it is to achieve a net zero economy by 2050. Doing so will require installed solar capacity to triple over the next decade, with an average annual installation rate of 2.6GW. Solar Energy UK expects roughly 10% of this total to be deployed in Scotland.
We have set out several detailed recommendations for areas which should be within the scope of a broader review of TNUoS in our response to the Call for Evidence.
Ultimately, what the industry wants and needs from this process is greater certainty and a level playing field to unlock the growth in renewables that is needed to deliver net zero. As such, is it important that where possible Ofgem can continue to move forward with implementing quick wins to improve the situation for renewable generators, considering the rapidly approaching deadline to decarbonise the electricity system by 2035. We have therefore also indicated which reforms could potentially be implemented more quickly and the best mechanism to allow for this parallel process.