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New standards launched to support energy flexibility market

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A new Code of Conduct has been launched to protect households and businesses participating in the energy flexibility market, which sees them buying and selling electricity to help manage supply and demand on the grid.

The HOMEflex Code of Conduct (Household or Microbusiness Energy flexibility), created by Flex Assure under the leadership of Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) and funded by the Network Innovation Allowance (NIA), aims to help build trust and encourage engagement in flexibility services.

As the UK continues its transition to a cleaner, more modern energy system, essential changes must be made to make it smarter, more responsive, and flexible; the launch of the HOMEflex Code is seen as a critical step in this transition. It defines common standards of practice for companies delivering energy flexibility services, encourages good practice and accountability and will ultimately lead to the potential creation of a compliance scheme and increased communication between flexibility aggregators and consumers.

Research conducted by the Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE) formed the basis of the Code, which found that domestic and microbusiness energy customers are calling for improved industry standards, as well as better adherence to those standards.

The hope is that the new HOMEflex standards will ensure service providers act with accountability, and allowing the sector to realise the full potential of domestic demand side response.

Natasha Mills, Scheme Administrator at Flex Assure, said:

‘Today we launched the HOMEflex Code of Conduct for Household or Microbusiness energy flexibility users. With the publication of this Code, we hope to increase consumer confidence in energy flexibility services, with the aim of encouraging participation. Government policy is clear at showing the importance that domestic flexibility will have in reaching Net Zero in a secure and cost-effective way, but without a focus on consumer trust and inclusion, this reality will not be achieved.’

Simon O’Loughlin, Innovation Project Manager, at Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks said:

“Energy flexibility is a critical part of the transition to Net Zero and forms a core part of SSEN Distribution’s plans. It is vitally important to us that we enable all our customers to benefit from the rewards flexibility can bring. During the transition to low carbon and Net Zero, projects such as HOMEflex are levelling the playing field and creating a fairer energy future for everyone. This will support our flexibility product road map and purchasing of flexibility.”

The official launch is taking place at The Academy of Medical Science on Wednesday the 11th of October in London, with speakers from Government representatives, project sponsor SSEN and National Grid ESO. 

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