Ofgem and DESNZ announced the CDB and set out a framework for improvements to the GB connections process in the joint Connections Action Plan (CAP), published November 2023.
The current processes for connection to electricity networks (both transmission and distribution) need significant reform to respond efficiently to the extremely high levels of new applications to connect, as well as the significant number and capacity of projects already holding connection agreements and seeking to connect. Ensuring customers can connect to the electricity network where and when they need to is crucial to achieving net zero, as well as to delivering affordability for consumers and maintaining security of supply.
The CDB was established to oversee actions under the Connections Action Plan including network company-led actions, drawing them into a coherent package, giving strategic direction and ensuring timely and effective implementation.
The CDB does this through two broad functions:
- to provide steer for proposals of policy and process design, actions in train and prioritisation.
- to oversee and monitor the progress of actions against key milestones and estimated impacts, and transparently communicate progress.
The CDB comprises organisations and representatives responsible for or affected by the delivery of changes to regulatory, legal, industry and commercial frameworks for connections and is chaired by Ofgem, working with the government. Membership is drawn from Ofgem, the UK Government, Scottish and Welsh Governments, ESO, TOs, DNOs, ENA, connection customer representatives, and consumer representatives.
The CDB meets monthly and is part of the overall governance of the implementation of the Connections Action Plan. The Connections Process Advisory Group (CPAG) and the ENA Strategic Connections Group (SCG) report into the CDB. Details of the CPAG and the wider Connections Reform programme activities can be found on ESO's website.