British Gas, EON Next and Octopus address National Grid scheme

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Today the energy watchdog Ofgem approved the proposals from the National Grid electricity system operator (ESO) to launch the Demand Flexibility Service which will run from November until March next year. According to the National Grid, households who take part in the scheme could potentially save around £100 on their energy bills. A number of energy providers have today announced they have signed up for the scheme.

Which energy suppliers are taking part?

EDF Energy

EDF confirmed that it was taking part in the scheme however not everyone will be able to take part in the trial.

EDF explained that it had selected a “small group of customers” based on data from the National Grid and that it will send invites via email to this group of customers by the end of November.

EDF Energy said: “If you get an invite, it will tell you everything you need to know about Demand Flexibility and how it works.”

It confirmed that people can only sign up if they receive an email invite and that customers are not able to sign up over the phone.

It said if the trial was successful then “more people get the chance to take part in future”.

Octopus Energy

Octopus Energy who piloted a similar scheme earlier this year, was one of the first suppliers to sign up to the National Grid’s scheme.

The energy firm expects to pay customers £4 on average during peak times between November and March through its Saving Sessions service.

Octopus says households could save £100 in total over winter, based on their electricity use being reduced by 1kWh once or twice a week, up to around 25 times.

The money will be paid as “OctoPoints” which people will be able to redeem to their energy account as credit in pounds.

Greg Jackson, CEO of Octopus Energy Group, said: “Let’s be very clear: this is a historic moment. We’re entering a new era of energy in which households are moving from passive offtakers to active enablers of a smarter, greener and cheaper grid.

“Instead of cutting off whole chunks of the country if we are short of gas, we can reward people for using less energy at times of peak demand.

“We were the first energy supplier to offer this service to our customers, and we hope others will follow our lead. By doing so, we can make blackouts a thing of the past, and bring costs down for everyone.

British Gas

British Gas told that it “supports the development of the Demand Flexibility Scheme” and that it was currently working with the National Grid ESO to develop a scheme which they will begin trialling later this year.

As of writing, people cannot register yet, but if someone opts in once it’s launched, they will be asked to reduce their energy usage during peak times, most likely between 4-7pm by around 30 percent.

These figures could change as the details of the scheme are still being finalised by British Gas. It has also not yet confirmed how much its customers will be able to earn however only customers with smart meters will be able to take part.

A British Gas spokesperson said: “By encouraging consumers to reduce their usage at peak times we can balance demand on the grid whilst helping consumers save on their energy bills.

“We are working on how this scheme can work best for our customers and fit in with their habits around the home. We will be running a trial first to learn from before using our scale to roll out to our wider customer base.”

OVO Energy

OVO Energy launched its “Power Move” scheme on November 1, and the scheme will run until March 31.

Participating customers, which currently stands at 7,000, will be offered rewards for reducing their energy usage between 4pm and 7pm from 19 percent of total daily usage to 12.5 percent.

This trial will reward the customers £20 for each month this is achieved so there’s the potential to pocket £100 over the course of the trial.

This scheme was launched at the beginning of October however, the firm said that the data collected as part of the scheme would be shared with the National Grid and the Government to prevent power shortages in the future.

E.on Next:

E.on has confirmed that it would be taking part in the Demand Flexibility Scheme however has not released the information on it as of writing.

The energy firm told that it would be contacting customers to invite them to join the scheme and that the “finer details” of the scheme were still being worked on.

An E.on energy spokesperson said: “E.ON Next is taking part in the National Grid’s Demand Flexibility Service to help our customers lower their energy costs by reducing their energy consumption. We’re asking eligible customers to sign up so that they can join in and save when the Grid sets Demand Flexibility events.

“The future of energy involves every customer – at home and in business – having their own smart, sustainable and personalised energy solutions that support their everyday lives.

“Time of use tariffs can be used alongside low carbon technologies such as solar panels, EV charge points and heat pumps to ensure we can move to net-zero at a lower cost by reducing the need for ever more upstream generation and reinforcement of our networks.”

Shell Energy

Shell Energy has told that it has not yet signed up for the National Grids scheme and is “unlikely to take part this winter”.

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