The voice of the networks

Accelerated Loss of Mains Change Programme

If you own or operate a generator connected to the distribution network, apply now to the Accelerated Loss of Mains Change Programme (ALoMCP). By applying, you could be paid in the next few months to make mandatory protection changes. These must be made by 1 September 2022, even if you haven’t applied to the Programme.

The ALoMCP is a programme launched with National Grid ESO, the ENA, distribution network operators and independent distribution network owners to provide funding and expertise to support eligible applicants making the Loss of Mains changes. Owners of generation sites must make these changes by 1 September 2022 or could be the subject of an enforcement programme.

We’ve also launched a fast-track application process in the Programme, which is open to generation site owners that meet specific qualifying criteria and can complete the Loss of Mains changes quickly. Eligible applicants could receive an additional £5000 payment for completing the changes. To understand more on Programme payments, read the Payment Process Specification.

The ALoMCP does not apply to domestic and similar generation that has been connected under EREC G83. It only applies to generation connected under EREC G59 before 01 February 2018.

  • Why should I apply?

    New requirements have been made in EREC G59 and all owners of generation sites must make these Loss of Mains changes by 1 September 2022 regardless.

    By making them in the Programme, owners can take advantage of financial support to carry out the work.

    Since the ALoMCP launched in September 2019, many sites have been updated to meet the new code requirements. We’ve made good progress but more changes need to be made rapidly to reduce increased Loss of Mains costs.

    Making these changes through the programme will help us run the grid more efficiently and reduce balancing costs. More funding is available and we’re keen to receive applications from owners of generation sites. Owners, or their agents, can apply on our application portal.

    A fast-track process has been introduced to reduce increased Loss of Mains risks and costs resulting from the reduction in electricity demand from COVID-19 lockdown.

     

  • Am I eligible for the fast track process?

    The fast-track process offers an additional payment of £5000 to generation sites that meet specific criteria and can commit to making required Loss of Mains protection changes quickly. The process will run in ‘schemes’. Each scheme will have its own qualifying criteria, cap, and additional payment.

    Owners of sites that meet the following criteria are encouraged to apply via the ALoMCP registration portal:

    • maximum site capacity: less than 5000 kW
    • type of Loss of Maims protection: RoCoF
    • pre-change RoCoF settings: up to and including 0.2 Hz/s
    • lead time to completing the changes: less than or equal to 4 weeks

     

  • The technical section! What are the setting changes required in the updated EREC G59?

    All generators that are connected to the distribution networks in Great Britain have Loss of Mains protection, one of the many protection requirements on the electricity system. This applies to generating plant within the scope of EREC G59, regardless of the type of generator eg PV, wind or gas etc. Loss of Mains is designed to check if a generator is still connected to the main network.

    Updated EREC G59 requirements must be implemented by generation owners by 1 September 2022. Where LoM is provided by vector shift, it must be removed and/or replaced with rate of change of frequency protection (RoCoF). RoCoF is the rate at which frequency changes and is used to detect the absence of the connection to the system and disconnects the site if that RoCoF exceeds a specific value.

    The RoCoF setting requirement has been changed from 0.125 Hz/s to 1 Hz/s with a definite time delay of 500 milliseconds. It will mean National Grid ESO will be able to operate the grid more efficiently.

    Most of the costs incurred in managing the LoM risk on the electricity transmission system is to limit the RoCoF to below 0.125Hz/s. Currently NGESO is limiting the RoCoF to below 0.125Hz/s so that generators with RoCoF protection are not inadvertently tripped. The costs are significant and are paid for by all of us through our electricity bills.

    These costs could be reduced if RoCoF above 0.125Hz/s was allowed. To achieve this, we need to change the RoCoF settings at all sites where RoCoF protection has an existing setting of 0.5Hz/s or less.

  • More useful information for applicants

    Applicants will complete the settings changes themselves using their own contractors or site management teams. To assist, the ENA has a directory of contractors who claim they have the capabilities to undertake this work. Generation owners are entitled to use any competent contractor to make the changes to their assets.

    Contractors listed on the directory of contractors are self-declared as competent but are not officially registered or formally approved by DNOs or the ENA.

    A contractor does not have to be listed to participate in the Programme providing they can prove their competency to undertake the changes to the satisfaction of the generator.

    For queries about your generation equipment, site, or the application process, please contact your local distribution network operator.

  • Information for generation owners

    Generation owners will complete the settings changes themselves using their own contractors or site management teams. To assist generators, ENA has a directory of contractors who claim they have the capabilities to undertake this work. A generator is entitled to use any competent contractor to make the changes to their assets.

    Contractors listed on the directory of contractors are self-declared as competent but are not officially registered or formally approved by DNOs or the ENA.

    A contractor does not have to be listed to participate in the Programme providing they can prove their competency to undertake the changes to the satisfaction of the generator.

    For queries about your generation equipment, site, or the application process, please contact your local distribution network operator.

  • Who is involved in the Accelerated Loss of Mains Change Programme?

    Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) and Independent Distribution Network Operators (IDNOs)

    All DNOs and major IDNOs in England, Scotland and Wales are involved in the Programme. Owners with generation connected to any IDNO should register in the ALoMCP registration portal and the Programme team will ensure they are progressed with all the other applications.

    The Programme Steering Group

    This group is the key forum for stakeholders to make sure their views are considered in the overall management of the Programme, and reviews delivery by network licensees. It makes sure that the ALoMCP is run efficiently and for the benefit of stakeholders and consumers.

    The Steering Group is comprised of representatives from Network licensees including:

    • National Grid ESO
    • six UK Distribution Network Operators
    • a representative for participating independent Distribution Network Operators
    • up to three representatives of BSUoS payers
    • up to three representatives of distributed generation owners
    • an observer appointed by Ofgem

    Meeting minutes can be found on National Grid ESO’s Programme website

     

     

     

  • What have customers said about the Programme?

    Oliver Leake, Earthmill Energy

    “Our company manages a large fleet of wind turbines which required over 250 separate applications for ALoMCP funding. At first this seemed like a daunting task but the user-friendly registration portal made the process of submitting the applications very easy. Whenever I did have a question or if there was something I did not understand, the teams managing the process, at the DNOs and ENA, were friendly, helpful and guided me through the process. Applying for funding is a no brainer as this is likely to be a mandatory change later anyway but right now the works are paid for.”

     

    Luke Andre, Director, Infer Energy Ltd

    “Aside from informing generator owners of impending grid compliance changes, the ALoMCP has proved to be a well organised transition scheme irrespective of the scale of generator. I encourage (qualifying) generation owners to take advantage while they can.”

     

    Martin Bleasby, Senior Manager at EnergyForce

    “The funding application process itself is very straightforward. It’s an absolute no brainer”

     

    Colin Lockwood, Senior Project Engineer at WindCare Ltd

    “For us, the process is relatively simple.”

  • Useful documents for applicants