Operability Strategy Report 2022

The ESO’s latest Operability Strategy Report explains the challenges we face in operating a rapidly changing electricity system and describes the capabilities and system requirements we need to resolve these challenges.

Decarbonisation, decentralisation and digitalisation are driving significant change across the electricity network, impacting how we operate the system now and into the future. 

To be able to operate the system carbon free by 2025 we will need to make fundamental changes in how our system is operated, integrating newer technologies right across the system.

To help us understand and find solutions for future operational challenges, the ESO publishes an annual Operability Strategy Report. The latest report is now available to download.  

What’s in this year’s report? 

Great Britain has the fastest decarbonising electricity system in the world, with an ambition to operate with zero carbon by 2025. To do this we are pushing forward innovative, world first approaches to transform how the power system operates.  

We are delivering frequency services that are fit for operating a zero carbon network where system frequency will, at times, be more variable. Our stability pathfinders and voltage pathfinders reduce our reliance on fossil fuelled generation for critical transmission system services. We can already maintain our system restoration capability without warming or running fossil fuelled plant. 

As in previous editions, the 2022 Operability Strategy Report reviews system operability across the five key areas of Frequency, Stability, Voltage, Thermal and Restoration – summarised in the image below. In the report, you can read more detailed information on each area.  

2022 Operability Strategy Report Key areas

Visit System Operability Framework (SOF) to download the Operability Report Strategy 2022 infographic.

One of the biggest challenges facing the electricity system is how much zero carbon generation the system can accommodate. In our Operability Strategy Report, we provide a measure of zero carbon generation with and without us making operational interventions. This comparison helps us forecast when zero carbon transmission generation may peak between now and 2025, as well as the possible conditions and developments driving these patterns. 

How does it relate to other ESO work?

The publication is part of our System Operability Framework (SOF), which takes a holistic view of the changing energy landscape to assess the future operation of Britain's electricity networks.

Within the ESO’s publications library, the Operability Strategy Report adds new insights to our wider workstreams.

The report defines our operational requirements and identifies future system needs. It complements the Markets Roadmap, which explains how our markets are evolving to meet these future needs in the most efficient way.

We also look at the key messages from our Future Energy Scenarios to understand what needs to be done to bridge the gap between today and 2050.

Get involved

For net zero to be possible we need to work together across industry. We are committed to working closely with colleagues and partners to make sure we have a holistic approach to finding solutions to future system challenges.

If you’d like to get involved in the Operability Strategy Report, please click on the links to specific opportunities throughout the document. You can also feedback on our approach to meeting operability challenges by emailing us at [email protected].

Download the 2022 Operability Strategy Report