New figures from energy regulator Ofgem reveal Britain’s energy networks have never been more reliable and customers have never been more satisfied with the service they receive, with companies last year achieving average scores of 9 out of 10.
Ofgem’s annual report for 2019-20 reveals the companies which operate the gas and electricity networks have also been able to keep costs to customers broadly flat over the entire regulatory period 2013-21.
Key findings also include:
- Since 2015 Britain’s local electricity networks have invested more than £730 million in resilience which has helped improve reliability significantly.
- The number of power cuts has fallen by a fifth, while the average length of interruptions has fallen by 15% to just over 30 minutes.
- Between 2013 and 2020 Britain’s gas networks will have invested nearly £15 billion, which has helped them to maintain exceptionally high standards of both safety and reliability which currently averages at 99.998%.
- Gas network operators have connected over 84,000 fuel poor households to their networks.
- Gas and electricity networks cleaner and greener than ever before.
The energy networks are cleaner and greener than ever before. Building on their plans for a net-zero gas grid, 2019/20 saw 19 biomethane plants connected to local gas networks, with over 100 now connected, while 3,400km of gas pipe was upgraded, cutting emissions from leakage and preparing it for green gases like hydrogen.
Over a quarter of all electricity produced is now connected to the local electricity networks. The electricity network operators also invested more than £35 million in innovation which will deliver a variety of operational and environmental benefits.
This improvement in performance is reflected in the customer service scores which average at nine out of ten. This puts them among the highest performing companies in the country for customer service not just in energy, but across the economy.
This performance has been maintained throughout the challenges of the pandemic, which has seen key workers in the energy sector work hard to support the communities across the UK throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
Sue Ferns, Deputy General Secretary of Prospect, said:
“The excellent level of service provided by networks businesses owes much to the dedication of our energy workforce. They have maintained the smooth operation of critical services throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, largely unnoticed and unsung. The Net Zero challenge further highlights the need for investment in key skills.”
Ross Easton, Director of External Affairs at Energy Networks Association, which represents the UK and Ireland’s energy networks businesses said:
“The latest statistics from Ofgem highlight just how much work is going on within Great Britain’s energy networks to innovate, increase reliability and maintain high customer service standards, while battling the challenges of a global pandemic. The sector employs more than 36,000 people and it’s through the hard work and professionalism of this dedicated workforce that these impressive results are possible.
“In the year of COP 26, the spotlight is firmly on Net Zero. While the networks are more reliable and cleaner than ever before, we know there’s more still to do. Our work continues with an absolute focus on providing high levels of customer service and a safe, reliable and low-cost Net Zero energy system that people across the country need.”
ENA – the voice of the networks
We’re Energy Networks Association, the industry body for the UK and Ireland’s energy networks. Our members own and operate the wires and pipes which carry electricity and gas into your community, supporting our economy.
The wires and pipes are the arteries of our economy, delivering energy to over 30 million homes and businesses across the UK and Ireland. To do this safely and reliably, the businesses which run the networks employ 45,000 people (36,000 in Great Britain) and have invested more than £100 billion since privatisation.
Our members are:
- Electricity North West
- ESB Networks
- National Grid
- National Grid ESO
- Northern Gas Networks
- Northern Ireland Electricity Networks
- Northern Powergrid
- Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks
- SP Energy Networks
- UK Power Networks
- Wales & West Utilities
- Western Power Distribution