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SSEN calls on customers to ‘signpost’ interest in flexibility services

Image: SSEN.

Image: SSEN.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has called on generators to “signpost” their interest in providing 250MWs of flexibility to the energy system.

This will prequalify customers to participate in alleviating network constraints through formal tenders in the future, with the DNO looking to secure its flexibility options over the next eight years.

Owners of low-carbon technologies, generators and solutions that are capable of absorbing demand are being called on to announce their availability, with SSEN set to take a technology agnostic approach when the procurement process begins next year. Those who win tenders going forwards will be able to earn money, support network security and the transition to net zero.

Stewart Reid, head of future networks, said SSEN was taking a "flexibility first" approach to network infrastructure investment, assessing smart flexibility service markets when new electricity infrastructure is needed.

“By registering their interest generators and owners of low-carbon technologies and solutions will help provide sight of where flexibility exists and support informed decision making that supports a cost-effective transition to a smarter electricity system. This is an exciting opportunity for owners of generation assets to play a proactive role in that journey.”

SSEN pointed to the Climate Change Committee’s recent forecast that electricity demand will potentially treble as the UK transitions to net zero, and the following requirement for a significant increase in electricity infrastructure and investment in the UK’s networks. Using flexibility and smart management can delay or sometimes avoid network reinforcement, easing the process and limiting the cost.

DNOs have repeated broke flexibility tender records throughout 2020, with Electricity North West announcing its largest flexibility tender ever in November, seeking up to 122MW, while Western Power Distribution awarded 222MW of flexibility in its sixth round of procurement in October.

SSEN has taken a number of steps to increase flexibility on its network, including launching its Constraint Management Zone flexibility scheme, which welcomed its first wind generator contract in October. The following month, it awarded Opus One Solutions a contract to develop and deploy solutions to test different flexibility market models.

Customers have until 31 January 2021 to signpost their interest in providing flexibility services to SSEN, and can register here.

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