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Connections process FAQs

We know that the journey to get connected can seem complex, and that you might have queries around the different stages of your connection journey.

To help you better understand what each stage means for you, we have answered a list of frequently asked questions.

ConnectNow queries

Our new ConnectNow portal has been designed to enable you to track your connection projects, from initial application right through to being connected to us. Here we answer the questions we're frequently asked.

Can I change my device for multi-factor authentication if I have a new device or lost my old one? 

You will need to link your account to a new device. Please contact us at [email protected].  We will first remove the link to your existing device which will then allow you to set up authentication via a new device in the same way.  

I don’t have an account; who should I contact? 

Please contact your Account Manager and they can request an account to be set up for you. You should receive a welcome email from our Salesforce platform. 

I  can’t see one or more of my projects, what should I do? 

ConnectNow only currently shows Generation and Demand projects. Projects such as DNO, Interconnectors, BEGA and a few others are not currently being shown. We plan to add these in the future. Also for new projects your Account Manager can only add a project once we have received an application from the National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO). 

I have lost / forgotten my password to my account. What should I do?

Click on the ‘Forgot password?’ link on the login page. Enter your username which is normally your email address and you should receive an email within a minute of your request. If you haven't received it, please check you spam folder. If it is not there, please email [email protected] for assistance. 

How do I add members to my team page?  

Please contact your Account Manager and they can request an account to be set up for your colleagues. If you have multiple companies, please let them know which companies you would like to give them access to, along with their name, role and email address.  

What do I do if someone leaves my company that has access? 

lease contact your Account Manager or email [email protected] and they will action this request for you. 

My link has expired on my welcome email, what should I do? 

 Sorry to hear this – emails expire after seven days so please contact us at [email protected] or let your Account Manager know. They will send you a new welcome email.

Covid 19: modifying your connection application

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic you may have uncertainties about your connection application or be in a position where you are considering modifying your connection application.

We’ve put together this information to help you with any queries and concerns you may have.

How much does a modification application cost?

Information about application fee costs, can be found in the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO)'s Charging Statement (p.28 - 36) or speak to your assigned NGESO Customer Contract Manager.

If I pay a variable modification application fee, will I receive a refund if the cost of work is less than what I paid?

Yes. The process for calculating application fees is unchanged (which means your final variable fee may increase or decrease depending on the nature of your requested contract change). For more information about how application fees are charged, please review CUSC Section 14.10 (p.22) or speak to your assigned National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO) Customer Contract Manager.

Will modifying my contract affect my securities?

Yes. If you modify your existing contract, the agreed securities will potentially need to be revised to cover any additional costs that weren’t provisioned for. To discuss the impact on securities further, please speak to your assigned National Grid Electricity System (NGESO) Customer Contract Manager.

Will my new completion date depend on the National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) obtaining a new outage date?

Yes. As is the case with any offer process, all completion dates depend on us being able to secure the relevant outages with the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO).

Will I be charged a delay charge?

If you decide to delay your connection date, we’ll endeavour to plan and carry out the construction programme as economically and efficiently as possible.  However, as set out in our TO Charging Statement (p.21), additional one-off works charges may apply if any extra work we do incurs additional costs that weren’t provisioned for or cannot be avoided.

My project has transmission reinforcement works that depend on National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) obtaining the relevant consents. Will timelines for these works be affected?

Unless you’ve already been contacted by us at NGET or the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO) advising you of a delay, there will be no changes to your timescales. Given the current situation, this will be under ongoing review.

Connection journey

Researching your connection

What are my connection options?

We at National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) provide connections for both generation and demand needs. From small generation around 50MW to large generation over 100MW, offshore wind farms to electrified railway, we can help get you connected.

For information visit our How can I connect webpage.

What will I be charged for?

As a connection customer you will be liable for a number of charges associated with your connection, both pre and post connection.

For more information please visit our How much will it cost? webpage.

What is a feasibility study?

A feasibility study is a bespoke study that may include a detailed analysis of the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS) to cover all areas such as connection options, infrastructure, construction, project timescales, costs, charging issues, risks, etc. 

We offer feasibility studies as speculative requests or when you are applying to connect your new project. 

Both NGET and the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO), can offer this service before you apply for a connection.  The cost of a study is based on the amount of work required.

Download our Feasibility Studies leaflet

What consents planning approval do I need?

All construction work and wider transmission reinforcement is subject to planning and statutory consents. If your project has planning consents, you will be responsible for obtaining these consents. You will need to list them for us in your application, making clear any consents that are pending.

We will work with the appropriate bodies to ensure that we have the necessary right and permissions to proceed.

What is connection capacity?

Your connection capacity will be declared in two forms. The first is your Connection Entry Capacity (CEC), this is the maximum potential output of your asset onto the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). The second is your Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC). The TEC is the amount you will export onto the NETS as a generator. CEC is often set higher than TEC to allow for changes over years in outputs without needing to adapt or modify infrastructure.

What is Connection Entry Capacity (CEC)?

This is the maximum potential output of your asset onto the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). 

What is Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC)?

This is the amount you will export onto the National Electricity Transmission System as a generator.

Who attends the pre-application discussion?

The pre-application meeting is an opportunity to discuss your connection plans and details prior to making your application. Attendees from NGET will include your Customer Account Manager and Power System Engineer to discuss your connection options, a Feasibility Engineer will attend to discuss indicative costs and the programme of works. Representatives from investment delivery may also attend. We would recommend that your Project Managers attend this meeting to liaise with our Account Managers directly.

Applying to connect

What is the application fee?

When you submit an application, you have to pay an application fee. The amount you pay will be dependent on the type of application you make, and covers the costs of processing your application, as well as preparing an offer to deliver the connection you request. For most connection customers you will have an option between a fixed or variable application fee.

For more information please visit our How much will it cost? webpage.

What is Standard Planning Data?

Standard Planning Data is technical data that is required by us as stated by the Data Registration Code (DRC). There is a DRC Tool available on the NGESO website which you can use to help provide all the correct technical information that we will require to design your connection.

What are connection registers?

The connection registers will give you an idea of how many current connections exist and at what capacity. There are a variety of connection registers available such as the Transmission Entry Capacity Register and the Interconnector Register on the NGESO website.

Why do I need to look at the connection registers?

We advise that you review the connection register appropriate to your connection type to help inform you of what other connections to the National Electricity Transmission System are currently ongoing. These connection registers could help inform you of where, or when you want to connect.

What is the Grid Code?

The Grid Code is the technical code for connection to and use of the National Electricity Transmission System. Compliance with this code is a requirement under the Connection and Use of System Code.

For more information on the Grid Code, please visit the NGESO website.

What is the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC)?

The CUSC is the contractual framework for connection to, and use of, the National Electricity Transmission System.

For more information on the CUSC, please visit the NGESO website.

What is the Security and Quality of Supply Standards (SQSS)?

The SQSS establish a coordinated set of criteria and methodologies that transmission licensees use in planning and operating the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

For more information on the SQSS please visit the NGESO website.

What are the mandatory services?

Mandatory services are required by generation customers to change their power output in response to a temporary imbalance of frequency on the system. This helps to keep the frequency on the system within statutory and operational limits. Generation customers with connections over a capacity threshold will be required to provide these mandatory services, while smaller customers have the choice to opt into this service.

For more information on mandatory services please visit the NGESO website.

What is a Customer Build Agreement?

Where a project requires transmission connection assets, we will include procuring and installing all necessary transmission connection assets on behalf of you within our offer. However, it's also possible for you to procure and install certain transmission connection assets yourself, by entering into a Customer Build Agreement or User Self Build Agreement. 

For more information on this, please discuss with your Customer Account Manager or make an enquiry.
 

What happens when I sign my offer?

After you have signed your offer, the National Grid Electricity System Operator will countersign the agreement, and you will be provided with your contract.  Any relevant registers, such as the Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC) Register will be updated with your project.  Following signature, you will be asked to provide any relevant securities to the NGESO and confirm that you meet the required credit rating within a month.  28 days following signature, you will also be expected to provide your Detailed Planning Data to the NGESO, unless otherwise agreed with the NGESO.

What happens if I don't sign my offer?

If you don't sign the offer provided to you by the given date, your offer will lapse. If you wish to take up this offer at a later date, you will need to resubmit an application. We understand that occasionally timings do not work, therefore, if you wish to extend your offer signing period, this should be discussed with your Account Manager in the National Grid Electricity System Operator. It might not always be possible to extend the offer signing period, but sometimes it is feasible.

Designing your connection

What is Detailed Planning Data?

Detailed Planning Data is technical data that we require as stated by the Data Registration Code (DRC). There is a DRC Tool available on the NGESO website which you can use to help provide all the correct technical information that we will require to design your connection.

What milestone information do I need to provide?

You will need to be able to confirm specific milestone dates associated with your connection such as planning consents that are pending or confirmed, development consent order requirements, your Final Investment Decision date, back-feed dates (direct connections only) and the date you are available for commercial load.

What is your Final Investment Decision (FID)?

Final Investment Decision (FID) means your company has positively decided to go ahead with your connection project and you have given a full notice to proceed with your suppliers and contractors, including any contracts  with us at NGET.

When you enter into agreements with us for your connection project some financial elements may not have been finally confirmed and your FID will be taken later. 

Your connection project is more likely to proceed once your FID has taken place, which is why your FID is such an important milestone for us in enabling our investments to be progressed with confidence.

How can I demonstrate a FID?

You can demonstrate that a Final Investment Decision (FID) has been made for your connection project by:

- company with Board of Directors: provide a certified extract of your board meeting minutes confirming the FID has been made.

- company without Board of Directors: provide confirmation that the FID has been taken by your Director(s). The evidence would typically be certified and provided in writing by your Company Secretary or by the relevant Director if you have no formal Company Secretary.

What is a back-feed date?

This is when you may need to take power from the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS) to support your commissioning and build programme.  

What is interactivity?

Interactivity occurs where a customer’s potential connection offer is affected by the terms of an already outstanding unsigned customer offer. We refer to these offers as interactive offers.

More information on interactive offers can be found on the NGESO website.

What is an intertrip?

An intertrip will automatically disconnect a generator or demand from the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS) when a specific event occurs such as a system fault. This is to relieve localised network overloads, maintain system stability, manage system voltages, and / or ensure quick restoration of the transmission system.

There are two types of intertrip:

Operational - those that are a condition of a connection to the system

Commercial - these may be specified at the time of connection or agreed on an ad hoc basis

What are ancillary services?

The term ‘ancillary services’ is used to refer to a variety of operations beyond generation and transmission that are required to maintain grid stability and security. These services generally include, frequency control, spinning reserves and operating reserves.

Building your connection

What do my construction milestones align with?

Your construction plan will align with the specific milestone dates that you provided when submitting your application. These can include planning consents that are pending or confirmed, Development Consent Order requirements, your Final Investment Decision date, back-feed dates (direct connections only) and the date you are available for commercial load.

Who is the Project Manager?

During the construction of your connection, you will have a Project Manager appointed from our Capital Delivery Team.

Can I change my milestones / timeline?

We recognize that sometimes external factors affect connection projects, such as consents not being granted on time or as expected, meaning completion dates are no longer achievable. In these instances, you will need to submit a modification application, confirming what changes you would like to make.  Where changes can be made, an agreement led variation will be sent to you.

Why do National Grid procure and use contractors?

When connecting you to our network, we establish the feasibility and designs for connections and co-develop the construction programme with you. We will thoroughly plan the assets required and to what specification, but we do not build or create these assets ourselves. We procure contractors for the provision of the equipment, assets or materials to enable your connection, and to carry out physical construction works on site.

Is my Construction Agreement (CONSAG) different to my Offer Contract?

No, your CONSAG forms a specific part of your contractual offer that you sign. Your contract with us will consist of two parts, the bilateral agreement which covers compliance requirements, and the CONSAG which specifies what construction works are required to be done to connect or modify your connection.

What is the Grid Code?

The Grid Code is the technical code for connection to and use of the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). Compliance with this code is a requirement under the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC).

For more information on the Grid Code, please visit the NGESO website.

What is the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC)?

The CUSC is the contractual framework for connection to, and use of, the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

For more information on the CUSC, please visit the NGESO website.

What if I need to terminate?

You are entitled to terminate your agreement with us any time prior to commissioning your project. To trigger the termination process, you will need to send a formal notification to NGESO stating your intention to terminate and we, NGET, with NGESO will liaise with you to terminate your contract.

For more information please see the Concluding your Connection
 webpage.

What is an Interface Agreement?

An Interface Agreement is entered for the installation and operation of transmission assets of one party on the property of the other party at an interface point.

Connecting to and operating the system

What is commissioning?

Commissioning is the process we go through to ensure that all the components of a new connection have been designed, installed and tested according to the safety and operational requirements of the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS) before allowing a connection to fully operate.

What is an Operational Notification?

Operational Notifications are certificates that assure assets are compatible with the existing network. They are issued to connection customers who have complied with their obligations under the Grid Code and Contract during the Operational Notification Compliance Process.

There are four types of Operational Notification issued in respect of new generation connections, referred to within the Grid Code, which are required for first energisation, first export, and a final notification when any identified issues are resolved.

For more information on Operational Notifications, please visit the NGESO website.

What are my obligations as the customer?

Earlier in the connections journey you will have been asked to agree to and comply with the Grid Code and your contractual requirements. As you approach your connection date, you will have to demonstrate your compliance to these codes and contracts through the Operational Notification Compliance Process. This process will ask you to provide statements confirming your compliance and documents which prove this such as a Compliance Statement, or a User Self Certification of Compliance.

Who books outages to commission the asset?

The NGESO liaise with us to plan outages to enable commissioning, maintenance works and any new construction activities.

What is the Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC)?

The BSC contains the rules and governance arrangements for electricity balancing and settlement in Great Britain, and is administered by Elexon.

It is a condition of holding a Generation or Supply Licence to sign up to the BSC.

The code covers aspects relating to metering of the physical production and demand for electricity from generators, suppliers and interconnectors against their contracted positions; and calculating and settling the resulting imbalances when the delivery or offtake does not match contractual positions.

Who are Elexon?

Elexon are an external entity to the National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) who are responsible for administering the Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC), which states the rules and governance around balancing electricity in Great Britain. They compare how much electricity generators and suppliers say they will produce and consume with actual volumes, helping to balance any differences.

For more information please visit the Elexon website.

What will I be charged for?

Once connected you will begin to pay a fee for your connection charge. This charge recovers the costs of building your connection assets as set out in our charging statement. The NGESO will bill you for this charge.  How you pay for these connection charges can be tailored to you, from up-front payment to annualised charges.
For more information please visit our How much will it cost? page or ask your assigned Account Manager.

Maintaining your connection

Can I change my Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC)?

Yes, you can request increases and decreases in your TEC. TEC increases and decreases may require a modification application depending on the size of the increase and the works required to enable this. If you are considering a change in your TEC you will need to give NGESO and us advanced notification and pay the relevant costs associated with your modification. 

For more information on this, please discuss with your Customer Account Manager or make an enquiry.

Can I modify my assets?

Yes. Modifications to Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC) and technology are examples of feasible modifications. You may be required to complete a modification application to begin this process. 

Is there a cost to modify assets?

Yes, there can be modification costs depending on whether you need a modification offer, and further costs depending on the nature of the modification to your assets.

For more information on this, please discuss with your Customer Account Manager or visit our How much will it cost? webpage.
 

When do I need to involve NGET in modifying assets?

Whenever you consider amending your asset you should notify us by discussing this with your Account Manager so that our records of your asset are accurate. Some modifications may require a modification application depending on the size of the works required.

For more information on this, please discuss with your Customer Account Manager or make an enquiry.

 

What if I have a concern with an asset?

If you have any concerns with an asset, please contact our Asset Management team. We will work with you to help resolve your issue.

What is the Grid Code?

The Grid Code is the technical code for connection to and use of the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). Compliance with this code is a requirement under the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC).

For more information on the Grid Code, please visit the NGESO website.

What is the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC)?

The CUSC is the contractual framework for connection to, and use of, the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

For more information on the CUSC, please visit the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO) website.

Who do I tell about decommissioning?

If your asset is approaching its end of life stage please get in contact with your Account Manager, or make an enquiry, to discuss your options surrounding decommissioning.

Concluding your connection

Can I terminate before I'm connected?

Yes, you can terminate your agreement during construction prior to commissioning if required. To do so you will need to send formal notification stating your intention to terminate to the National Grid Electricity System Operator (NGESO).

How long will it take to terminate?

The timeline of your termination will be dependent on if you have commissioned your assets or not. Timelines for terminating in advance of commissioning will be dependent on the amount of works that have already begun and what is agreed in termination impacts meetings. Terminations after commissioning may require reductions in electricity outputs or intakes and asset disconnections. An analysis will be undertaken to identify the impact this work will have.

Are there costs for terminating?

When you end your contract with us, we will reconcile the costs that have been incurred to date in relation to your connection assets and settle the value associated. These costs could be in relation to incurred construction costs to date if you are a pre-commissioning customer, or in relation to outstanding usage charges if you’re a post-commissioning customer.

For more information please visit our How much will it cost web page.

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