Firms to pay £6m for wholesale energy market regulations breach

Ofgem said ESB Independent Generation Trading Limited and Carrington Power Limited submitted inaccurate data about the amount of energy a power plant could supply

The Big Zero report

ESB Independent Generation Trading Limited (ESBIGT) and Carrington Power Limited have agreed to pay £6 million for breaching rules of the wholesale energy market.

Ofgem said between March 2019 and September 2020 the companies submitted inaccurate data to the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO) about the amount of energy Carrington power plant could supply, breaking rules around market manipulation.

That made NGESO purchase more energy from the plant than needed to balance supply and demand, leading to higher costs for energy customers.

NGESO normally buys power from generators to help the grid having sufficient power to meet demand.

It relies on accurate data to make this process as efficient as possible.

The energy regulator said the companies have admitted that they “inadvertently breached” the rules.

The sum of money they will pay will go to the energy redress fund to support vulnerable households.

Cathryn Scott, Regulatory Director at Ofgem, said: “Ofgem has taken strong action against another generator for submitting inaccurate data to National Grid Electricity System Operator.

“Data accuracy is essential for keeping the costs of running the electricity system as low as possible for consumers. This case sends a clear signal to all generators that we are closely scrutinising their conduct and will not hesitate to act if they fall short of the standards we expect.”

In a statement, ESBIGT and Carrington Power Limited said: “Compliance with its regulatory obligations is a priority for ESBIGT. We take this breach extremely seriously and apologise for the inadvertent breach of our obligations. We were disappointed not to have met our own high standards and took immediate steps to comply with Ofgem’s guidance.

“Corrective actions have been taken to prevent reoccurrence with new governance arrangements in place to ensure ongoing compliance.

“Although this breach was inadvertent and ESBIGT believed the dynamic parameters it submitted would contribute to lower costs to balance the system, we have taken the engagement with Ofgem extremely seriously and cooperated fully with Ofgem throughout this process.”

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