GLOSSARY OF TERMS
BUSINESS CARBON FOOTPRINT
A reputational incentive to encourage Distribution Network Operators to consider the direct carbon impact of conducting their operations and to be proactive in the reduction of emissions.
CONSTRAINT MANAGED ZONE (CMZ)
Flexibility services, known as Constraint Managed Zones, from renewable energy generators and battery storage, including hydro, solar and wind, can opt in to being paid to provide power to support electricity networks during maintenance and faults on the network, reducing the reliance on fossil-fuel based energy generation. Businesses can also opt in to be paid to turn down their electricity demand to support network operations.
CONSUMER VALUE PROPOSITION (CVP)
When building business plans for RIIO-ED2, network companies may bid for a reward on the quality aspects of their plan as revealed through a ‘Consumer Value Proposition’ (CVP). In its CVP, a company should demonstrate the additional value its plan will generate for existing and future consumers and consumers in vulnerable situations.
Constraints is a term used for restrictions on the ability of a network to transport energy. For example, due to thermal or voltage limitations. An electricity network is constrained when the required capacity to transport desired electricity flows is higher than the actual capacity on the network. Can also be referred to as network congestion.
DISTRIBUTION NETWORK OPERATOR (DNO)
A distribution network operator (DNO) is a company which operates the electricity distribution network which includes all parts of the network in Great Britain. There are 14 DNOs in GB which are owned by six different groups.
DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM OPERATORS (DSO)
As DNOs actively manage the local levels of demand, whilst at the same time accommodating varying amounts of generation onto the network, they will start to behave like system operators (balancing local demand and supply on their networks).
DISTRIBUTION FUTURE ENERGY SCENARIOS (DFES)
The Electricity System Operator’s (ESO) Future Energy Scenarios (FES) all forecast a continued increase in distributed generation and extensive take-up of low carbon technologies (LCTs). SSEN Distribution has taken the ESO’s FES pathways and developed its own evidence-based future energy scenarios, known as Distribution Future Energy Scenarios, taking into account its stakeholders’ needs. These needs have been based on Local Network Plans (LNPs), which have been developed with local authorities, and direct discussion with relevant stakeholders.
ELECTRIC VEHICLE (EV)
Vehicles that utilise electric motor(s) or traction motor(s) and are powered by either an external power station, on-board electrical generators, or stored electricity.
LOCAL NETWORK PLANS (LNP)
SSEN Distribution advocates for the wide adoption of Local Area Energy Plans (LAEPs) to help communities achieve their net zero ambitions. Local network plans and shared energy data will support the creation of these, helping local authorities and local enterprise partnerships understand the uptake of low carbon technologies in their areas. LNPs provide the local distribution network with network constraints and capacity information to aid stakeholders as they develop their LAEPs and Local Heat and Energy Efficiency Strategies (LHEES).
LOW CARBON TECHNOLOGIES (LCT)
Technologies that produce power with substantially lower amounts of carbon dioxide emissions than is emitted from conventional fossil fuel power generation. This includes low carbon power generation sources such as wind, solar, hydro and nuclear. Household LCTs include electric vehicles, electric heating, heat pumps, etc.
Ofgem calculates network costs using the Ofgem Supply Market Indicator (SMI) – this is a 12-month forward look at the pricing trends and costs which make up an average energy bill. On average network costs account for approximately 1/5 of a domestic energy bill (2019 Total average annual domestic dual fuel bill £1184 (£572 gas, £612 electricity). Electricity distribution charges are set regionally based on the cost of efficiently running the network across the region. These charges vary between regions as the cost of distribution varies considerably (due to geography, infrastructure and population density). Charges vary within regions according to the type of supply taken (voltage and number of rates).
This refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gas emissions produced and the amount removed from the atmosphere. In order to meet the 1.5°C global warming target set out in the Paris Agreement, the UK Government has legislated that carbon emissions should reach net zero by 2050, and the Scottish Government by 2045.
The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets, supporting the Gas and Electricity Markets Authority, is the government regulator for the electricity and downstream natural gas markets in Great Britain. Ofgem works to ensure the electricity wholesale and retail markets are competitive. They regulate distribution and transmission networks and manage the commercial tender process for offshore transmission projects.
OPERATIONAL TECHNOLOGY (OT)
OT consists of the control, telecommunication and monitoring systems that we use to operate and manage our primary assets. OT facilitates data collection, automatic operation from protection or software, and manual action from an operator. It includes all software and hardware between screens and keyboards of engineers to the terminals of the switch or device on the low voltage (LV), high voltage (HV) or extra high voltage (EHV) network.
RIIO ELECTRICITY DISTRIBUTION 2 (RIIO-ED2)
The second RIIO price control review to be applied to the electricity distribution network operators. This price control will run for a period of 5 years between 2023 and 2028. ED3 refers to the price control period post-2028.
Science-based targets provide a clearly defined pathway for companies to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, helping prevent the worst impacts of climate change and future-proof business growth.
Targets are considered ‘science-based’ if they are in line with what the latest climate science deems necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement – limiting global warming to well-below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C.
SSEN Distribution became the first UK DNO to publicly commit to setting science-based targets aligned with the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – a collaboration between CDP, the United Nations Global Compact, World Resources Institute and the World Wind Fund for Nature.
Southern Electric Power Distribution (SEPD) is SSEN’s distribution network area in central southern England.
Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution (SHEPD) is SSEN’s distribution network area in the north of Scotland.
Whole System means making optimal network investment and operational decisions for the whole energy system, not just the distribution networks in isolation from all the equipment connected to the network.
WORST-SERVED CUSTOMERS (WSC)
Customers who live in remote hard to reach areas of the network, who may experience more frequent outages. Customers experiencing 12 or more higher voltage interruptions in a three-year period, with a minimum of three per year.