System operator National Grid has decided not to procure Demand Side Balancing Reserve (DSBR) for winter 2016-17.

The company said: “DSBR was designed for those consumers that don’t already reduce or shift demand or run embedded generation during peak times in response to pricing signals and – despite National Grid amending the DSBR service via a consultation in September 2015 to encourage participation over the peak – it is clear this has not been successful.

“Following tender close on 9 June and subsequent validation of data, it has been determined that minimal volume would be available across this period.

“It is our intention to collaborate with DSBR providers capable of offering reserve across the peak in order to understand if alternative delivery routes can be developed for this winter.”

Criticism of decision

David Cockshott, Chief Commercial Officer at energy consultancy Inenco Group, said: “The decision to completely cancel DSBR for the coming winter is a short-sighted move.

“Withdrawing a scheme three months before it comes into effect risks undermining business confidence in future schemes, from the capacity market to frequency response.”

Chris Kimmett, commercial manager at demand response aggregator Open Energi, added: “The perception of demand-side response as a ‘blunt tool’ for stimulating demand reduction in a crisis is out of date.

“The reality now is that fast reacting, invisible demand response innovation fits precisely around the needs of companies, earning them revenue, proactively and invisibly – whilst safeguarding core business functions.”

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