The voice of the networks

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Energy Networks Association's response for the Mail on Sunday

30 April 2019

Reports are misleading, says ENA.


“It is misleading to consider profitability alone which does not include the amount of capital investment in the networks. This is particularly the case for network companies, which are capital intensive businesses and invest heavily year on year. The regulatory reports provide a more accurate reflection of the full value delivered by the networks which includes this reinvestment back into the system.”

“Since 1990 the cost of running the networks to British bill-payers has fallen by nearly 20% and the networks have a strong track record of consistently delivering for the UK’s households, businesses and communities.”

Notes to editor

  • £100 billion of investment has been delivered since privatisation in 1990 by gas and electricity network companies. Since 2015 alone, the electricity network companies have spent £10.2bn managing their networks
  • Since 1990 customers have 59% fewer power cuts while their length has been reduced by 84%. An average customer would have a power cut less than every two years lasting around 35 minutes
  • Electricity network companies are thoroughly scrutinised by the regulator, with strong incentives in place to ensure efficient delivery for customers and in 2015 the Competition and Markets Authority also carried out a detailed review of the regulatory framework
  • Customer service scores recorded by Ofgem for electricity distribution currently stand at 8.7 out of 10
  • Directly employing 36,000 people, the energy networks have a vital role in supporting UK plc. The UK is also ranked globally seventh by the World Bank for ease of getting electricity. This is well above countries like the US and France (54th and 14th)
  • Renewables’ share of total generation was at a record high level of 33.3% in 2018, up from 29.3% in 2017. Over 30GW generation has been connected to the distribution network, most of which is renewable
  • The National Infrastructure Commission has identified up to £8bn p.a. savings/efficiency from networks investing in innovative new technologies

About us

Energy Networks Association (ENA) is the industry body representing the energy networks. Our members include every major electricity network operator in the UK. The electricity networks are at the heart of the energy transition. They directly employ more than 26,000 people in the UK, including 1,500 apprentices. They are spending and investing £33bn in our electricity grids over the coming years, to ensure safe, reliable and secure energy supplies for the millions of homes and businesses reliant on power every day.

Press contacts

You can contact ENA's press office by emailing For urgent or out-of-hours enquiries from journalists, please call 0204 599 7691.