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United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Industry responses cautious on wind balancing changes

UK: Two responses to a consultation from the UK National Grid on accommodating wind power in the electricity balancing mechanism have suggested a cautious approach to changing the system.

Balancing act...consultation responses urge caution
Balancing act...consultation responses urge caution
Electricity retailer SmartestEnergy has cautioned against what it calls "knee jerk reactions to a few price spikes", saying that it is too premature to judge the effectiveness of current balancing arrangements for wind.

Colin Prestwich, head of regulation at SmartestEnergy expressed concern at proposals to implement different arrangements for different fuel types.

He said: "This may lead to discrimination against certain classes of generation", adding that changes to the balancing mechanism "should only be considered at a later stage once the fuel mix has changed significantly and National Grid cannot balance the system because more wind has not been enticed into the mechanism".

Wind energy association Scottish Renewables said in its response that review and reform of current balancing arrangements "must be considered with the myriad other initiatives and reforms currently underway across the entire market".

It added that it did believe that National Grid needed to invest in the necessary network upgrades to improve system congestion.

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