To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made an assessment (a) of the potential effect of Ofgem's Access and Forward-looking Charges Significant Code Review on the timetable for investment in renewable generation in the North West as a result of the creation of uncertainty in charging for connections over 1MW and (b) of the potential for that review to be frustrated in its objectives by key pinch points on the National Grid.
Ofgem has recently consulted on three areas of reform through its Access and Forward-looking Charges Review. First, it is proposing to reduce or remove the contribution to distribution network reinforcement costs paid by connecting customers. This would support the roll-out of low carbon technologies, including by further incentivising network companies to ensure that new connections can be accommodated on the network. Second, Ofgem is proposing to improve the definition and choice of rights that users have to access the distribution network, with the aim of supporting more efficient use and development of network capacity. Third, Ofgem is minded to remove a difference in charging arrangements between large and small generators, by extending transmission charges to small distributed generation.
Ofgem has published a draft impact assessment to support its proposals, which includes consideration of implications for investment decisions and constraint management. It is available at https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/publications/access-and-forward-looking-charges-significant-code-review-consultation-minded-positions. My Department is continuing to engage as Ofgem progresses the review, to understand how any decisions can help support delivery of a secure, net zero energy system at lowest cost to consumers.