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Maxine Frerk to Chair new Energy Networks Association stakeholder engagement group

09 February 2022


Energy Networks Association’s (ENA) Open Networks programme has launched a new independently chaired stakeholder engagement group chaired by former Ofgem executive and regulation expert Maxine Frerk.

The new group, titled a Challenge Group, will provide greater engagement opportunities for stakeholders, a more formal challenge function on behalf of the wider industry and a closer view of the industry body’s world-leading Open Networks programme.

Announced last year, the new Challenge Group is the latest phase in giving stakeholders a bigger role in supporting the programme’s delivery of Net Zero Networks and putting into practice principles of transparency and accountability.

Commencing at the end of February, the group consists of more than 20 non-network representatives from across the industry – including flexibility providers, local community representatives, academics and consumer support groups – who will provide input and expert challenge. The list of representatives is available on ENA’s website.

Maxine Frerk, Chair of Open Networks Challenge Group said:

“I’m really pleased to be the Independent Chair of this new Challenge Group. I see the work of Open Networks as key to delivering the Net Zero energy transition and stakeholder input as vital to the success of the programme.”

Farina Farrier, Head of Open Networks at Energy Networks Association said:

“Making sure that stakeholders’ voices are heard is more important than ever, and the Challenge Group will help strengthen our programme direction, provide independent oversight and enable us to work more closely with industry to shape the programme and its outcomes.

“Maxine brings with her a wealth of experience, and a really strong understanding of the challenges and opportunities we face in getting to a Net Zero energy system, and I’m delighted that she’s agreed to Chair our new Challenge Group.”

Since ENA established the programme five years ago, stakeholder engagement has been at its heart and has been invaluable in shaping the direction of its outcomes. To further help guide its work, a quarterly Dissemination Forum is being launched in March and anyone with an interest in learning more about the programme’s priorities and upcoming deliverables is encouraged to join by signing up via ENA’s online form.

Having two groups will support better participation and collaboration as well as allowing stakeholders to choose their level of involvement with the programme.

Notes to editor

  • The Challenge Group will meet bi-monthly from February, and the full list representatives is available on ENA’s website.
  • The Dissemination Forum will cover all areas of work across the programme and run quarterly from March 2022. ENA welcomes all interested parties to join this forum and stakeholders can sign up via its online form. The latest list of Dissemination Forum participants is available on ENA’s website.

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.

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