Five things we learnt from Energy Spectrum | 664

BEIS’s Updated Energy and Emissions Projections 2018, published in April, showed that the UK remains off target to meet its fourth and fifth five-yearly carbon budgets. In this week’s Energy Perspective, we look at the projections in more detail, concluding that while the pressure on the government to rachet up its policies has been increasing ever since the policies set out in the Clean Growth Strategy revealed the shortfall against the fourth and fifth budgets, the net effect reflected in the latest projections is that low-carbon policies will need to be even more ambitious than had been thought. Particularly as the emissions gap is set to worsen from 2033 when the sixth carbon budget begins.

The Committee on Climate Change’s landmark report, Net Zero: The UK’s Contribution to Stopping Global Warming, sets out recommendations to government as to how to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. In our Policy section this week we look more closely at the key recommendations in the report, concluding that it is impressive in its scope, and only serves to put more pressure on the government across all areas of emissions reductions.

Ofgem presents a credible set of reforms in its consultation launched as part of its five-year review of the Capacity Market rules. We look at the consultation in our Regulation sector, suggesting that the CM Advisory Group should help provide some much-needed coordination before change proposals go to Ofgem, but issues around participation and resourcing will need to be considered further.

In our Industry Structure section, we detail Iberdrola’s first quarter results finding that, for the slimmed down Scottish Power, there is a notable contrast from a retail business hit by competition and price caps compared with the networks and renewables businesses, where profits are on the rise. 

We have two Nutwood features this week. The first, from Cornwall Insight Associate Peter Atherton, takes a look at Utility Warehouse’s avoiding – to date – of the challenging conditions experienced by others in the retail market. Our second article introduces a new Cornwall Insight service, the Benchmark Power Curve, which provides a comprehensive market and asset-level power price modelling service that delivers long-term price forecasts.

Related thinking


Energy market and net zero transition learning and development: Role-relevant career development training

We’re well over halfway through the calendar year and are now beginning to see more of the government’s thinking and policy-shaping around what needs to change to meet the 2050 net zero target. For example, the flurry of documents issued towards the end of 2020, including the Energy White Paper...

Low carbon generation

Our Renewables Pipeline Tracker: In with the new – scoping projects and progression through planning stages

Our latest Renewables Pipeline Tracker was published on 11 June, and this blog provides a summary of some of the recent developments in our coverage of the pipeline for new build and repowering renewables assets in GB. What’s new? Seabed leasing rounds, scoping projects and CfD announcements Since our previous...

Regulation and policy

How will consumers take to Market-wide Half Hourly Settlement?

Ofgem published its decision to implement the move to Market-wide Half Hourly Settlement (MHHS) on 20 April. This confirms plans to move to new settlement arrangements over a four and a half year time period, with the Elexon-led Design Working Group’s Target Operating Model to be used as the blueprint. Meters...

Regulation and policy

Ofgem raises modifications ahead of RCC and new switching arrangements

The latest edition of our Faster Switching Service Report due to be issued this week includes the latest developments in Ofgem’s Switching Programme and the associated Retail Energy Code (REC). Launched in November 2019, the Retail Code Consolidation (RCC) Significant Code Review (SCR) set out Ofgem’s intention to amalgamate the...

Net zero corporates and ESG

Get ready for climate risk reporting?

On 30 April we released the latest copy of our Energy net zero. The publication takes an in-depth look at the UK's transition to a low carbon economy. The below is an extract from our Energy Perspective on Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD). The article was originally published in the...

Regulation and policy

Calm before the storm? 2021 energy supplier compliance developments

The latest update to our Energy Supplier Compliance Portal went live on 4 May and includes changes to the compliance landscape during February to April 2021. While the previous quarter’s update reflected new principles resulting from Ofgem’s Supplier Licensing Review (SLR) and protections for prepayment meter customers facing self-disconnection, Q121...

Regulation and policy

Electricity transmission charging reform – overtaken by changing priorities?

Charging for the transmission network is never out of the development process for long. From major reviews, such as that initiated under Project Transmit in 2010, to significant reforms such as removing the triad benefit from distributed generation in 2018, and a host of smaller developments, change seems the only...

Low carbon generation

How nuclear energy can help the UK reach its net zero goals

This article was originally written in Energy Spectrum on 21 March 2021. To find out more about a subscription to Energy Spectrum, please contact Nick on There are several challenges to reaching net zero, where its proponents believe nuclear could add value. Some of tomorrow’s main issues concern: How to provide low...