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‘Uncertain winter’ pushes UK to seek extra electricity

National Grid has decided to exercise its option to tender for Supplemental Balancing Reserve (SBR) for winter 2014/15.

The decision is supported by Ofgem and DECC.

National Grid will tender for generation plant that would not otherwise be available in the market to make themselves available to be held in reserve outside the market during this winter.

National Grid director of UK market operation Cordi O’Hara said: “This is a sensible precaution to take while the picture for this winter remains uncertain.  At this stage we don’t know if these reserve services will be needed, but they could provide an additional safeguard.”

The actual volumes of SBR contracted, if any, will depend on how the situation evolves over the next two months, how the market responds, and whether prices offered in the tender offer value for money to consumers.

Ms O’Hara added: “We have had a very positive response to the DSBR pilot and plan to offer contracts to the successful parties in September. Tendering for Supplemental Balancing Reserve will enable us to see what additional reserves can be provided by generators at a competitive cost”.

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