ENA response to Select Committee report into Network Costs

Monday 23 February 2015

The Energy and Climate Change Select Committee has today (Monday) published a report following its inquiry into network costs.

Energy Networks Association (ENA) and its members, the companies who own and operate the wires and pipes of the electricity and gas transmission and distribution networks, have welcomed the debate around energy networks which this inquiry has prompted. ENA are pleased the report highlights the widespread support for robust and rigorous regulation of the networks and recognises the importance of stability and market confidence in keeping cost to consumers low.

Commenting on the report ENA Chief Executive David Smith, said:

“For 81p a day customers get one of the most reliable energy networks in the world at one of the lowest costs in Europe. Outputs and performance for customers will continue to improve into the next decade while the networks component of their bill will stay broadly flat or even fall. Network companies are focused on delivering increased stakeholder engagement, raising their profile with customers and widening competition.”

The cost of Britain’s networks has fallen 17% in real terms since privatisation while investment of almost £80 billion has secured safer, more reliable and more efficient infrastructure.

Continue investment to replace and maintain ageing infrastructure whilst ensuring the networks adapt to meet the challenges of a low carbon economy will be vital to the UK’s energy future. The networks enable new homes, business and industry, boosting the economy and facilitating renewable and decentralised generation.

ENDS

Notes to editors

ENA is the voice of the networks representing the ‘wires and pipes’ transmission and distribution network operators for gas and electricity in the UK and Ireland.

81p a day figure is calculated using Ofgem’s January 2015 Supply Market Indicator figure of £297 as the average cost of the networks component of a dual fuel bill therefore includes both for the transmission and distribution networks for electricity and gas.

Ofgem analysis shows that between 1990 and 2006 the total cost of running the GB electricity and gas networks fell 45%. Despite significant planned investment between 2006 and 2014 they are still 17% lower.

According to DECC up to £41bn could be invested in the GB energy networks between 2014 and 2021 while the costs to customers’ bills for the networks will remain flat or in some cases fall.

By 2020 £80 billion will have been invested in the networks since privatisation, that’s enough to stage the Olympics 9 times despite significant falling costs.

From 2010/11 to 2013/14 the amount of competition in electricity distribution network more than doubled from 14% to 32% of connections being carried out by independent connection providers

For further information please contact:

Tim Field MCIPR,
Head of Press and Public Affairs
Energy Networks Association

E: [email protected] 
T: +44 (0)207 706 5157
M: +44 (0)7725 372 758
W: www.energynetworks.org 

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