Coronavirus (COVID-19) – latest information
Get the latest updates and news about what ELEXON is doing to assure the continuity of the services provided under the BSC and EMR and the help we are providing to ease the burden to our Parties who may be experiencing difficulties at this time.
We have addressed a number of questions or issues that may arise because of the current events. Please see the sections below for more information.
Building closure and meetings
Added: 16 March
Our senior management team have decided to close our office until further notice. We are doing this to safeguard the well-being of all visitors to our office, and our staff. So we are asking our customers not to travel into our office until further notice.
If you were due to attend a meeting organised by ELEXON, a member of our staff will contact you to make alternative arrangements, such as hosting the meeting via tele or video conference. We frequently use tele and video conferencing to host meetings.
Added: 24 March
BSC payment terms will continue to operate as per usual. If a Party is unable to meet the payment terms, they should contact ELEXON for advice.
Changes to the BSC
Updated: 14 April
At its monthly meeting on 9 April, the Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC) Panel agreed a set of principles for ELEXON to work to, when progressing changes to the code while the industry manages the impact of COVID-19.
Changes to the BSC (and its subsidiary documents) will be progressed where they:
- Are required to mitigate risks and issues caused by COVID-19
- Are required to be implemented by a fixed deadline, and
- Have minimal impact on market participants, unless required for the previous two points.
Credit Assessment Price (CAP)
Added: 25 March
Following a consultation the Credit Assessment Price (CAP) will decrease from £36/MWh to £30/MWh from 16 April. The reduction helps to ease the burden on BSC signatories as they manage the impact of the coronavirus.
- For more information on the latest decrease see ELEXON Circular 3130.
Added: 31 March
Reducing Demand Capacity
BSC Parties are able to reduce the value of Demand Capacity (DC) (making the negative value closer to zero) of Supplier BM Units up to twice per BSC Season.
We recognise that the coming months will have unforeseen impacts to BSC Parties forecasts and therefore if you need to make a further reduction please contact [email protected]. Where a further reduction is relevant to the ongoing situation with Coronavirus we will consider further requests to reduce the DC beyond the twice per BSC Season limit.
Importance of accurate Demand Capacity
Generation Capacity (GC) and DC values are used in the calculation of Parties’ (if applicable) Credit Cover Percentage (CCP). Accurate values of GC and DC are essential to ensure the accurate calculation of CCP and CEI.
If the DC is overestimated the Party may need to provide a higher amount of Credit Cover than necessary.
ELEXON’s day-to-day business
Added: 24 March
Consistent with the general advice of Ofgem, we are continuing to operate the BSC and EMR arrangements as usual. Both ELEXON and its subsidiary, EMR Settlement Ltd (EMRS), are working as normal delivering our full range of services under the Balancing and Settlement Code, the Capacity Market and the Contracts for Difference schemes.
We do not expect the closure of the office to result in any issues for our services and no issues so far have occurred. However we remain vigilant and continue to monitor the situation closely.
Half-Hourly and Non Half-Hourly Demand
Added: 3 April
Please note: guidance documents on Half Hourly Estimation During COVID 19 and Non-Half Hourly Estimation During COVID 19 have been updated since they were first published on Friday 3 April. Please check that you are using the correct versions of the guidance notes.: Half Hourly (HH) Estimation During COVID 19 (V2.1) and Non-Half Hourly (HH) Estimation During COVID 19 (V2.0).
Non-domestic Non Half-Hourly sites
For non-domestic Non Half-Hourly sites (i.e. smaller businesses) Suppliers will be allowed to submit a new consumption estimate that reflects the current reduced consumption at a property (where they have evidence of such a reduction).
Half-Hourly metered sites
For Half-Hourly metered sites (which are generally larger, or industrial sized businesses) if a Supplier is unable to obtain remote readings, perhaps ue to a communications failure, they will be allowed to submit a new estimate of consumption that reflects the current reduced consumption at a property (again where they have evidence of such a reduction).
The PAB has the power to make these derogations in accordance with BSCP537 and under emergency powers authorised by ELEXON’s CEO in accordance with BSCP40. This decision was made at the PAB meeting on Friday 3 April.
Added: 26 March
Updated: 14 April
The PAB has decided on the following measures:
Suspension of Supplier Charges
December 2019 Supplier Charges – approved by a Performance Assurance Board (PAB) ex-committee meeting – will be issued to Parties in the next few days for payment in line with the normal timetable.
January 2020 and February 2020 Supplier Charges will be approved by the PAB and issued to Parties in line with the normal timetable as there is no BSC provision that specifically provides for this, thus a technical, compliant solution could not be found.
On 9 April the BSC Panel raised Modification P406 ‘Temporary disapplication of Supplier Charge Serials SP08 and SP04 due to COVID-19’ which seeks to set Supplier Charges for Performance Assurance Reporting and Monitoring System (PARMS) Serials SP04 and SP08 to £0 for all Suppliers from the March 2020 PARMS reporting period, until further notice (cancellation of the charges rather than deferral).
Supplier Charges are liquidated damages that Suppliers incur if they fail to meet certain performance levels. They compensate Parties disadvantaged by those who aren’t meeting defined Standards and are one of the remedial Performance Assurance Techniques deployed by the PAB.
Suspension of Error and Failure Resolution (EFR)
The current triggers for EFR (such as the result of BSC Audit issues and as a result of poor performance against the 97% and 99% standards) will be suspended.
Existing EFR plans will be placed on hold, unless the Supplier or Supplier Agent responsible for the plan advises ELEXON that they would like to continue tracking against the plan.
PAB escalation for missed milestones is suspended.
Suspension of Technical Assurance visits
We are suspending site visits by the Technical Assurance Agent (TAA) with immediate effect.
The TAA will continue the groundwork for Desktop Audits, so that they can be implemented in the event that restriction of movement becomes a long term countermeasure. However, no notifications for Desktop Audits will be sent until the PAB has determined that the immediate concerns for the industry have reduced.
Postponement of Technical Assurance of Performance Assurance Party (TAPAP) checks
TAPAP Checks for Risk 11, Unmetered Supplies which were originally due to take place April – June 2020 will now be postponed to allow the selected Parties to concentrate on business as usual critical work.
The situation will be reviewed and updated to PAB at its May 2020 meeting. However, this will be for planning purposes only and any updated decisions and timeframes will then be communicated to Parties if appropriate.
Delay to finalisation of BSC Audit
The 2019/2020 BSC Audit is nearly completed and will be finalised remotely. It is likely that there will be a delay to the final audit report so businesses can prioritise critical business as usual work.
The BSC Auditor, ELEXON and the PAB will consider the current difficulties and restrictions when agreeing the audit scope for the 2020/2021 audit.
Ongoing review of other Performance Assurance Techniques (PATs)
Other techniques (such as Peer Comparison and education) will be reviewed to consider the COVID-19 issue and the PAB will make further decisions on these at its April meeting, if required.
If the measures implemented by the UK Government change, the decisions to suspend PATs will be reviewed by the PAB and any amendments communicated to the industry. The PAB and ELEXON will ensure that recovery time from the restrictions is built into the re-application of the PATs.
Added: 24 March
We are not recommending any changes to the load profiles, the calculations are designed to handle variance through GSP Group Correction. There will be some misallocation of Non-Half Hourly volume, but the energy settled for Non-Half Hourly customers will be correct once meters are read.
Further, Suppliers will have used the profiles for their forecasting models and changes could have an adverse impact on their Energy Imbalances. However, we are monitoring the data as it becomes available and will report on any findings.
Inputs to the Profile Coefficient creation
We are not recommending any change to the Regression Coefficients.
Regression Coefficients are built from the previous three year’s Profiling Sample data for that season. Regression Coefficients were approved for use by the Supplier Volume Allocation Group (SVG) for Spring to High Summer 2020 (April to the start of September) in February 2020. These coefficients have been released to industry as part of the Market Domain Data (MDD) process.
The out-turn variables used in the daily production of Profile Coefficients are not affected – E.g. Noon-Effective Temperature, sunset are determined on a given Settlement Date.
Future Regression Coefficients
The Group Average Demands (GADs) for Spring to High Summer 2020 (calculated using analysis of the Profiling Sample data) will be reviewed at by the Profile Expert Group (PEG) in November 2020. Hence, if the load profile shape for a weekday is significantly different to a typical year, the use of the GADs in creating future Regression Coefficients (and therefore influencing future Profile Coefficients) can be assessed.
The GADs are required to be recommended by the PEG to the SVG for approval for use in creating the Regression Coefficients. The use of calculated Regression Coefficients in the Profiling process are also subject to approval by the SVG. The next GADs are scheduled to be reviewed by the PEG in June (based on Profiling Sample data from September 2019 to end of March 2020).
Accuracy of the profiled data
We might see more variation in the Grid Supply Point Group Correction Factors (GGCFs) if the true demand shape is different to that used to build the Regression Coefficients. As part of our market monitoring processes, we monitor GGCFs and will report on any findings.
GGCFs scale the correctable SVA volume (primarily Non-Half Hourly volume) so that the net volume in a GSP Group matches the GSP Group Take (calculated from boundary point metering between the Transmission and Distribution Networks).
Trading Charges (FAA)
Added: 24 March
We must continue to operate the normal payment processes for Advice Notes due to the nature of the calculations. What we collect in as Trading Charges is what we pay out, so it’s important that we continue to operate the processes as normal.
ELEXON Clear Limited or the Funds Administration Agent (FAA) releases Advice Notes for Trading Charges at different frequencies depending on a BSC Party’s operation. This is determined by the value of the Trading Charges each day. An Advice Note is released when the value totals +/- £500. The Advice Note is then payable in three business days.