Strategy & management

Editor's picks

Problems with solar panels and insultation were the most complained about issues over a three-year period, Citizens Advice has revealed. A report titled Home Truths, examines three years of contacts to Citizens Advice’s consumer service from people who need help with installing low carbon technologies or making energy efficiency improvements to their homes.
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Scottish Water has been named the most trusted company in Scotland in a consumer survey by watchdog Which? that said the regulatory framework contributed to customer sentiment. Which? said water was the only industry in Scotland rated more trustworthy than counterparts in other areas of the UK.
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As part of the investment strand of our Countdown to COP campaign, Utility Week talks to Michael McNicholas of Omers, the backers of SGN and Thames Water. He discusses the investment case for UK utilities and ways to incentivise long-term, low-risk capital to drive forward decarbonisation.
Interviews

Latest in Strategy & management

Chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak has earmarked £1.7 billion of new funding to help get one major new nuclear power plant off the ground before the next election. The Treasury’s spending review, published on Wednesday (27 October) alongside the Budget, contained few new energy investment commitments beyond confirming those announced last week in the government’s Net Zero Strategy.
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The long-standing discipline of asset management is undergoing transformation in the utilities sector as the forces of decarbonisation and decentralisation make themselves felt, alongside rising regulatory expectations for service and operational efficiency. But do companies feel they have the asset information and understanding they need to underpin the shift? Utility Week explores the challenge in a new report.
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Disruptor brand Rebel Energy has postponed its launch until 2022 when it hopes to profit from a “decidedly different” competitive landscape. In a letter to customers Rebel’s chief executive and former BP trader Dan Bates and chief operating officer Penelope Hope highlighted how the energy crisis had caused a number of suppliers to fail in recent months. They added that once the current energy crisis has subsided Rebel exists to “stand in the gap”.
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As part of our Countdown to COP series, Ovo Energy’s director of sustainability, Dr Rebecca Heaton, discusses the company’s Plan Zero as well as what COP26 means to her.
Interviews
The government's target to reduce the costs of heat pumps by 25-50% by 2025 is unlikely to be met, Delta-EE has predicted. Responding to the recently published Heat and Buildings Strategy, the consultancy projected that the total costs of installation could be reduced by up 40% over a ten-year period in an optimistic scenario.
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As part of our Countdown to COP series, Utility Week speaks to Gordon Rogers, head of long term strategy, environment, planning and innovation at United Utilities. He discusses his company’s decarbonisation commitments as well as the wider need for action to adapt to a climate that is already changing.
Interviews
Centrica Business Solutions has established a dedicated team to develop, build, manage and optimise a portfolio of solar farms and battery storage systems that will be used to supply its customers with clean energy. The company said Centrica Energy Assets will aim to build 650MW of solar farms and 250MW of batter storage by 2026.
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Affinity Water has issued its first green bond to the value of £130 million to fund projects that will improve the environment as the company works to improve biodiversity and energy efficiency, reduce and prevent pollution, and improve the sustainability of water supplies.
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Elexon has decided to bar small supplier Omni Energy from registering new electricity meters after the company failed to sufficiently reduce its credit cover percentage. The disruptor brand, which specialises in serving in prepayment meter (PPM) customers, previously warned it was “highly likely to cease trading”.
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A more than £1 billion tax windfall should be used to help fuel poor households in the forthcoming budget, the head of the charity National Energy Action has argued. Adam Scorer warned that without emergency support, millions of households will sink further into debt or be forced to turn off their heating, becoming at risk of serious ill-health.
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Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) Distribution has been officially recognised by the global Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) for its carbon reduction ambitions. The network operator will strive to cut its emissions in line with the Paris Agreement goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.
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