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BSC data now presumed open to assist net zero progress

The change comes after the Energy Data Taskforce's 2019 report, which recommended that energy system data is presumed open. Image: Getty.

The change comes after the Energy Data Taskforce's 2019 report, which recommended that energy system data is presumed open. Image: Getty.

All Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC) data is now presumed open, allowing individuals to request it be made openly available even if they are not a BSC Party.

In order to do this, individuals are required to complete a data request form, which will be then sent to the Analysis and Insight team for processing. This request will then be put through triaging, industry consultation and committee review by the Balancing Mechanism Reporting Service (BMRS) Change Board before the data is classified as either open, public, shared or closed.

Triaging is the process in which a request can be checked against criteria including consumer privacy, negative consumer impact, security or commercial impact.

If data is classified as open it will be available for all to use, modify and distribute with no restrictions. If it is public, it will be publicly available but with some restrictions on usage. If it is shared, it will be available to a limited group with the potential for some restrictions on usage, and if it is closed it will only be available within a single organisation.

After the triaging process, Elexon will issue a consultation to industry for a maximum of 15 working days. This consultation will follow a standard format and include how Elexon proposes to mitigate the data to make it more open, what the benefits will be to BSC parties, wider industry and the requester, whether Elexon is aware of similar data sets and what – if any – the risk to Settlement, Elexon and industry members is, among other elements.

A periodic review of the arrangements to release data will be conducted at least once every 24 months, with classifications and mitigations of data to also be reviewed at the BMRS Change Board or at the BSC Panel’s discretion.

It follows the Energy Data Taskforce’s June 2019 report, which recommended that the energy sector should adopt the principle that energy system data should be presumed open and suggested that Ofgem and/or the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy should use legislative and regulatory powers to achieve this.

Modification P398 was therefore proposed by the BSC Panel, and Elexon further developed the proposal with the industry. Prior to this, the BSC did not fully adhere to presumed open principles. Now, the BSC assumes that all data is open unless there is a reason otherwise, explaining that access to open data assists progress to net zero by supporting innovators in developing new products and services.


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