The traditional energy system is undergoing a major transition to a smarter digital energy system, which is dominated by decarbonised, decentralised and digitalised resources.
As this shift occurs, the challenges and opportunities associated with data across the electricity and gas networks are becoming more prevalent. Taking a whole energy systems approach to data and digitalisation is critical to ensuring an optimised energy system that works for everyone.
We have formed a Data Working Group to collaboratively address data issues across electricity and gas, access new datasets and identify opportunities to gain value from existing datasets.
Network investment in modernising energy data is essential for continued decarbonisation of our energy system and delivery of net zero emissions.
We are working with Ofgem, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, UK Research and Innovation and others in the industry to progress and deliver the recommendations of the Energy Data Taskforce and deliver modern, digitalised energy networks for customers.
Energy networks digitalisation strategies
The energy sector has an unprecedented challenge in evolving to incorporate large amounts of Distributed Energy Resources (DER) such as solar panels and electric vehicles, uptake of which is increasing all the time as we strive to achieve our net zero targets. Digitalisation will ensure that energy networks are in the best possible position to tackle this challenge, by having quality data that can inform investment, optimise processes and enable innovation to future proof the whole energy system.
All of our members have produced individual digitalisation strategies, which describe how they plan to move towards digitalised networks. These strategies are transparent and accessible, giving clarity to users about the data services that are available today and those that will be available in the future. You can find these strategies on the individual network operator websites or consolidated on Ofgem’s website. These documents will be updated as per the requirements in Ofgem’s licence conditions.
There are representatives from our membership in the Data Working Group. It is important to us that everyone can get involved and understand the progress of the energy sector in delivering the Energy Data Task Force recommendations and digitalisation more broadly.
Data and digitalisation is critical to enabling a smart, flexible energy system, including facilitating a whole energy system approach. We will be using the well-established and successful stakeholder engagement techniques from our future networks projects – Open Networks and Gas Goes Green.
The Data Working Group sits across both of our future networks’ project and is why we recommend you join one or both of the mailing lists for Open Networks Project and Gas Goes Green updates. You will receive regular updates and obtain all invitations to our events, webinars, consultations, roundtables and other engagement sessions. Specific events will also be posted on our events page.
Centralised data request form
The Energy Data Task Force (EDTF) published a report in 2019 that defines five recommendations on how data can assist with unlocking the opportunities provided by a modern, decarbonised and decentralised energy system for the benefit of consumers.
Maximising the Value of Data
As part of Recommendation 2 - Maximising the Value of Data, the ENA Data Working Group is reviewing a standardised approach for networks to triage and respond to data requests they receive. They have developed a centralised data request form to help gather insight into the volume of requests, their origin, the granularity of data requested and how the data will be used. In creating a single point for data requests and standardising networks’ approach to servicing these requests, we will ensure data from across the networks is “Discoverable, Searchable, Understandable”.
This form is in proof of concept stage, data requests will be shared with network operators but they will not be processed.