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The Future is Digital: WPD commits to publishing open access network data

We are making innovative use of data and the latest technologies, as part of our commitment to a net zero carbon future, as outlined today in our plans for digitalisation.

Our drive to harness data to deliver ever more intuitive, lower carbon energy solutions for customers has been set out today in the roadmap for our first digitalisation strategy.

We already employ the latest digital technologies to operate and develop our network. Today’s roadmap explains how these digital technologies are set to play an increasingly vital role in converting data into meaningful insight that not only benefits customers, but connects more renewable, low carbon technologies and enhances network performance.

“We’re seeing significant increases in renewable forms of generation connecting directly to our network, such as solar, wind, heat pumps and energy storage. We’ve taken proactive steps to adapt to the change by embracing innovative solutions, technologies and commercial arrangements to make optimal use of existing network capacity,” said Nigel Turvey, our DSO and Future Networks Manager.

“Our digitalisation roadmap explains how we’re harnessing digital technologies to create a future electricity network which is affordable, reliable and meets the evolving needs of customers,” Nigel added.

The new roadmap, which will form an integral part of our future business plan, focuses on two main aims;

  • Digitalising the energy system - this involves the continuous delivery of innovative projects to provide greater visibility of network data; and
  • Opening up all data - through a publicly available online Energy Data Hub.

“Our neutral position in the energy services market means that WPD is ideally positioned to act as a hub for this information,” said Nigel.

We have already made huge strides in delivering tomorrow’s network. These include a host of projects which have opened up energy data to enable homes, businesses and local authorities to better manage the energy they use and generate – ultimately lowering carbon emissions. One example is the Future Energy Scenarios project, where data allows us to forecast system needs and identify flexibility markets through our Flexible Power brand. This has already opened up more than 120MW of flexibility, allowing us to manage the network even more efficiently.

Core activities already underway include the improved granularity and accuracy of network data to deliver enhanced real-time operations and future investment planning.

The roadmap will continue to evolve as a result of significant stakeholder input, which is critical to our approach. Nigel concluded: “We will continue to add to and enhance the data sets available and welcome feedback on further data that customers, government and local authorities would find useful.”

The digitalisation commitment can be found here.

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  • DSO/Smart Networks