Utility Week

Utility Week 16th June 2017

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People & Opinion Utility Week community UTILITY WEEK | 16TH - 22ND JUNE 2017 | 7 "Predictable and depressing." John Alker, campaign and policy director at the UK Green Building Council, responds to Donald Trump taking the US out of the Paris Agreement on climate change. Two directors join Water UK Water UK has announced that two new directors will join the organisation in September 2017. Rae Stewart (pictured) will take on the role of director of corporate affairs, while Stuart Colville will join as director of strategy. The new appointments will form part of an organisational restructure at Water UK. Stewart comes from a journalism background, having worked for ITN, GMTV and Sky News. He then held several communications roles for the Cabinet Office, becoming director of communications for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) in 2013. He also led the communications func- tion at the Department for Exiting the European Union in 2016. Colville began his career in consulting, before spending ten years in the civil service. He has been involved in infrastructure, EU and energy policy both in the Department for Transport and the Department of Energy and Climate Change. In his current role, he is Defra's principal private secretary. Commenting on the appointments, Michael Roberts, Water UK chief executive, said: "We are delighted to welcome Rae and Stuart on board. Their energy, experience and insight will complement the exist- ing strengths in the Water UK team and help us meet the challenges we face in the water sector. "I look forward to working with them as we continue to enhance the service and support we provide our members." APPOINTMENTS Two Number of "cyber apprentices" distribution network operator Northern Powergrid has taken on as part of a wider government pilot scheme that aims to help protect the nation's critical national infrastructure from cyber threats and attacks. The Billing Code, an initiative established in 2006 by Energy UK to drive more accurate domestic billing, has recorded year-on-year progress. It measures suppliers' peformance using five criteria: switching; meter reading; energy bills and statements; payment and refunds; and back billing. Gold medal (x1) EDF Energy Silver medal (x3) British Gas, Eon, Scottish Power Bronze medal (x1) Npower From the blog Brexit and the UK's obligations under the Paris Agreement John Chandler, energy partner, Shakespeare Martineau Once it officially leaves the EU, the UK will need to submit its own National Defined Contributions (NDC), unless the UK and the EU agree on a joint fulfilment agreement. This will in part depend on whether the UK remains part of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS). If it does, then a joint fulfilment agreement will be necessary unless and until Paris Agreement accounting rules are set up under Article 6 to allow the UK to bring its EU ETS trading activity directly into account. The joint fulfilment approach was the one taken by Iceland when it ratified the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol; Iceland participates in the EU ETS through its membership of the European Economic Area. There would appear to be nothing in theory to stop the UK completing the first Paris cycle in joint fulfilment with the EU (once its allocation is agreed and as long as the EU were happy to do this), and then submitting its own NDC in 2025 to cover the five years from 2030. To read the full piece, visit: http://bit.ly/2qFHNZZ The evolution of competition in the water market Tom Sebire, senior manager, Baringa Partners For companies once used to the relative calm of regulated monopoly retail service provision, the transition to a fully competitive retail market for 1.2 million business customers has been a challenging journey. With the market now open and running, companies may be tempted to sit back and relax, proud of what the industry has achieved. But it's too early to call the job done. For a start, the market hasn't yet settled down, with a new release of functionality or modifications to the central market operating system (CMOS) occurring every few months. Responding to these changes will con- tinue to draw time and resources away from companies' own system or process improvement projects, while increasing the potential for customer service disruption. Meanwhile, as companies gain customers in new regions and set about billing, they are learning if their testing in the shadow market was sufficient, and whether their pricing, invoicing and settlement processes can keep up. Any challenges relating to the accuracy of ambitious profit margins and cost to serve estimates forecast in tenders may soon start rising up the chief financial officer agenda. To read the full piece, visit: http://bit.ly/2rIKe1q Where now for an energy price cap? James Harvey, director, Economic Insight The results of last week's general election start another period of uncertainty for the utility sector and energy policy. This is especially the case in relation to the energy price cap. Both Labour and the Conservatives had pro- posed a cap. Labour pledged to keep average dual fuel bills below £1,000 in the transition to renationalisation and the Conservatives pledged to introduce a safeguard cap to protect consumers that do not switch. There is an obvious tension in the Conservatives' position that Labour could now make mischief to encourage consideration of its version of the cap. To read the full piece, visit: http://bit.ly/2rIRbzI

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