As the Electricity System Operator for Great Britain, we manage the connection and generation contracts that impact on the transmission system. We work closely with Transmission Owners (TOs) to support customer connections. In this section, we’ve got everything you need to understand the connections process. Including what you need to do to connect to, or make use of the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).
An evolving electricity system
Over recent years rapid progress has been made to decarbonise the electricity system and deliver cleaner energy for all.
This has translated into an unprecedented growth in applications to connect to the transmission system. In a relatively short time, we’ve seen the electricity system transform from a smaller number of large fossil fuel generators to a diverse range of supplies, including renewable generation and storage.
The system also needs to adapt to meet new demand for electricity. Yet, the process for connecting to the electricity transmission system, written nearly 20 years ago and designed for fewer, larger power plants connecting to the system, has remained largely unchanged.
To keep up with the pace of change, we need to reform how projects connect to the electricity transmission system to deliver benefits to consumers as soon as possible.
As of February 2023, there were over 250GW of projects contracted to connect to the transmission system, compared to around 80GW of connected generation already on the system and just in this financial year (21/22), there has been an 84% increase in applications to connect. Ensuring the physical electricity system can quickly adapt to meet these demands has become a key priority.
What are we doing now?
We recognise the challenges around connections and the application process. As a result, we have launched our five-point-plan of tactical initiatives to help improve the connections process in the short-term.
All formal Connections Reform Consultation responses received are now under review, and we will be going back out to our stakeholder governance groups in September to establish our final recommendations.
On 1 March, in England and Wales, we started implementing a new two-step process. This will reduce uncertainty for developers in the long-term and will apply our new background modelling and battery assumptions.
As the Electricity System Operator for Great Britain, it’s our job to move electricity safely, reliably and efficiently through the system.
This is a high level view of the connections process from start to finish. There are also some useful resources to help you along the way, from applying for your connection agreement, to disconnecting from the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).
The Connections Portal has been designed to transform the connections journey and account management for all customers.
Our step-by-step guide takes you through the entire connections offer process, from pre-application to contract signature. You’ll also find links to more information that will help you submit an application.
In this section, we’ve got everything you need to get involved with our customer connection events.
This page summarises the Operational Notification and Compliance Process (ONCP) facilitated by ESO in respect of new generation connections.
This page has contains Connections registers, reports and other relevant publications prepared by our Connections team, Including the TEC, Embedded and Interconnector registers.
We’ve brought together some tools and resources that we think will help you along your connections journey.