Five Steps to FES success: the industry next steps needed to meet the aspirations of the FES models.
A big societal shift.
That’s what National Grid’s Future Energy Scenarios (FES) are calling for to reduce carbon emissions in the energy sector and mitigate against the effects of climate change. We’d encourage any readers not yet familiar with the FES to read the 2020 FES in 5.
Until now this annual look at the approaches for decarbonising the UK energy sector has been constrained by the 80% targets. But with the 2019 legislation to reach Net Zero by 2050 enshrined in June last year – National Grid’s analysts, researchers and experts have been able to mark out clear, target meeting, scenarios. Last year, none of the four models proposed in the FES got us to Net Zero. This time – three of the four get the UK over the line.
There are crystal clear trends in the 2020 FES that make it stand out from previous years:
- All net zero scenarios see no fossil-fuel electricity generation without Carbon Capture Usage and Storage (CCUS) to abate it.
- Over 90% of electricity generated will come from wind, solar, nuclear and bioenergy with CCUS by 2050.
- For Limejump customers (and their assets and revenues), the trend is clearly positive for battery, wind and solar.
Here at Limejump we know that this societal shift will not happen in isolation. So, how do we get there?
A big industry shift. That’s what we need – in tandem with the societal shift – to realise the aspirations of the FES.
As a company, we are at the forefront of Net Zero delivery. But as things stand, we are missing some vital aspects from the industry toolkit. We have five clear asks to help make FES predictions come true.
- Clear investment signals for Flexibility. We want to see National Grid setting out detailed 5-year requirements and procurement plans across the whole suite of Balancing and Ancillary Services. This is necessary to deliver the FES 2030 milestones which include 20% renewable growth and 1.5GW of turn-down. This is key to stimulating the necessary investment.
- The local picture: The Net Zero role of DNO led-flexibility is growing. We need to know how National Grid’s plans will integrate.
- Co-location regulation: Co-location of generation and storage is an exciting trend. We’d welcome regulations to support co-location of storage with ALL sizes of renewable generation including large renewables participating in the CfD.
- Easy access: Collectively the industry needs to make it easy to participate in Flexible Services. It is key that participation should be technology agnostic across low carbon technologies, and most importantly that Flexible Services are open to the full range of asset sizes. Currently, it is often disproportionally expensive for smaller assets to participate. We must have interoperability standards to support smart management and drive participation. If we make it too hard, it will remain the preserve of the few and the FES is clear – we need action from many.
- Clear overall regulatory framework: We cannot afford to lose time because of uncertainty. Everything from clarity over network charges, clear renewable subsidies, and the direction of travel for market structure must be enshrined.
National Grid’s 2020 FES brings together the enormous changes required to deliver the Net Zero targets, providing a framework on which the government and regulators must ladder up their detailed plans whilst allowing the market to challenge and reference the end goal.
For Limejump and its customers – it is a rallying cry to keep up the hard work. Our proven capabilities place us front and centre in the societal and industry shifts needed to deliver net zero.