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National Grid announces U-turn on blackout plan

National Grid announces U-turn on blackout plan

The National Grid has announced that there will not be planned blackouts tomorrow evening with Brits reimbursed for their time without power

The National Grid has announced Brits will not be paid to stop using energy tomorrow evening after concerns about the UK’s energy supply.

The National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) said earlier that the winter emergency electricity plan could be brought into effect for the first time tomorrow due to expected shortages from the French electricity grid, though they have now decided against that.

The demand flexibility scheme has been tested twice so far, but this would have been the first live event before the National Grid decided against it.

Anyone who does take part in the scheme - if and when it happens - will be able to earn money for turning off their power during peak times when blackout warnings could arise.

Households could be offered up to £100 by their energy supplier to switch appliances and devices off.

Only houses with a smart meter will be eligible, however.

Energy supplies are expected to be stretched tomorrow evening.
Matthew Horwood/Alamy

Earlier today, a spokesperson for the National Grid’s electricity systems operator said that the move to activate the demand flexibility service live was being considered for tomorrow evening.

The spokesperson said: "What has happened is that the ESO has issued an indicative notice on BMRS to alert demand flexibility service providers that we may issue a requirement at 2:30pm for the use of DFS tomorrow night.

"We’re still assessing what requirement we might need, so it’s still possible that we will issue a requirement for 0MW at 2:30pm that will stand down the use of the DFS tomorrow night."

They continued: "We do have quite a diverse energy provision. Offshore wind continues to provide a huge amount of our energy, particularly during the winter months,

"While we are preparing for all eventualities, we are confident that we will continue to have good provision throughout the winter months."

The National Grid is planning blackouts tomorrow.
Paolo Galasso/Alamy

Back in October, National Grid CEO John Pettigrew warned that there might be the possibility of blackouts during the ‘really cold’ afternoons of the winter months.

Whilst he said that the ‘base case’ established by the company suggested that there would be enough electricity to avid blackouts, the worst-case scenario seemed to suggest that electricity could be cut off ‘probably between 4pm and 7pm in the evenings on those weekdays when it’s really, really cold in January and February’.

He explained how the situation in Ukraine following the Russian invasion has introduced the uncertainty to the UK’s supply of gas and electricity.

He said: “In the context of the terrible things that are going on in the Ukraine and the consequences of that [it was] right that we set out what some of the potential risks could be.”

The National Grid has been planning for this eventuality.
Paul Biggins/Alamy

Pettigrew went on to say that a ‘huge amount of work’ was being done to make sure that vulnerable people are not left without power should it come to it.

The government has so far said that blackouts have not been discussed, but that it is ‘preparing for all eventualities’.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: UK News