Improving customer connections

Making sure that generation and demand schemes can connect to our network in a safe and timely manner is one of our primary responsibilities as the owner of the transmission network in the north of Scotland. We have a huge job to do over the coming years to make sure that our network is capable of connecting the growing onshore and offshore renewable power helping to meet Scotland and the UK’s net zero targets and securing our future energy by using affordable, home-grown, low carbon electricity.

Changing energy landscape

At the beginning of 2024, our network had just over 9.2GW of renewable generation connected. We currently have just under 63GW of generation capacity contracted to connect to our network. The demand for services is increasing every month as new applications are received and offers for connections are accepted.

With this growth in renewables and shift in the energy sector, connection requirements are changing and customers are utilising a range of technology types for generation, for example, storage. The connections process needs change in order to efficiently advance those projects which are ready to connect to meet the renewable generation 2030 and 2050 targets.

Reforming the Connections Process

The Electricity System Operator (ESO) is taking a range of actions to improve the process of connecting to the transmission grid. Recognising the challenges currently facing connection customers, the ESO launched their Connections Reform project to address these challenges.  Initiatives underway include their commitment to enhance the connections process, which is being worked on through extensive engagement and valuable input from stakeholders, including the Connections Process Advisory Group (CPAG).  

A high level overview of the ESO’s proposed enhanced First Ready, First Connected approach (referred to as TMO4+) can be found here.

As the ESO deliver the reformed connections process via code modifications they are looking to establish whether developers hold secured land rights for the proposed location of each contracted connections. Having an early understanding of projects in that will enable them to understand the impact of the proposals and whether projects can or cannot be accelerated under a reformed process. More information on the ESO’s Request for Information on Land Rights and Planning Status, including the link to submit information, can be found here.

A word from our Director of Customers and Stakeholders

"Connections reform is vital in helping the country to achieve net zero. We are working with partners across industry to develop changes to the connections process that will enable better use of existing network capacity and improve our customers’ experience in the long term."
Christianna Logan, Director of Customers and Stakeholders

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