Energy Digitalisation Taskforce

The Energy Digitalisation Taskforce (EDiT) was focused on modernising the energy system to unlock flexibility and drive clean growth towards net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

This Taskforce, like its predecessor the Energy Data Taskforce, was run by Energy Systems Catapult and chaired by Laura Sandys for the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, in partnership with Ofgem and Innovate UK.

The Challenge

EDiT considered the market design, digital architecture and governance of a modern digitalised energy system and followed the highly influential Energy Data Taskforce which initiated a wave of energy data activity across government, the regulator and industry.

The Taskforce delivered a set of actionable recommendations that sit at the intersection between policy, regulation and innovation, to challenge the status quo and deliver the energy system transformation that we need to reach Net Zero.

The Approach

The Taskforce focused on delivering actionable recommendations in two areas:

  • Energy System Destination – is aimed at understanding the future digitalisation needs and drawing on best practice from other industries and countries to recommend technical options and a delivery roadmap.
  • Governance – will consider the new governance issues that deep digitalisation presents and look to other industries and countries to identify solutions for emerging monopolies and cross regulator risks.

The key objectives of the taskforce were to:

  • Refocus the energy sector on the challenge and opportunities of Digitalisation as a core component of transformation, not just an enabler.
  • Accelerate digitalisation of the energy system which enables emerging Net Zero compatible business models, markets and industry structures.
  • Develop target digital architectures and a roadmap that draw on experience from other sectors and provide the energy sector with a focal point to ensure digitalisation efforts are coordinated and effective.
  • Identify digitalisation gaps that require innovation support.
  • Identify the governance risks that digitalisation raises and present frameworks to mitigate issues.

Energy Digitalisation Taskforce – Structure

EDiT was chaired by Laura Sandys CBE and delivered by Energy Systems Catapult with support from EnergyRev.

The EDiT delivery team at Energy Systems Catapult was a group of leading strategic advisors from other sectors who could stretch and challenge the direction of the taskforce and emerging recommendations. Five leading innovative industries were identified, including telecommunications, logistics, change management, internet (governance) and manufacturing.

Energy Digitalisation Taskforce – Delivery

Early in the Taskforce process, EdiT delivered a review of the EDTF recommendations from June 2019 to understand where the sector should go next. This was to allow the sector to learn from the initiatives that have been launched over the last two years

The delivery team then worked in sprints to develop recommendations for Energy System Destination and Governance. The project team also engaged with the wider sector through a series of events at the end of each delivery sprint.

At the conclusion of the Taskforce,  there was a final report detailing the new recommendations for the sector, along with a set of dissemination events for the sector to engage with the recommendations and work towards their adoption.

Energy Digitalisation Taskforce – Oversight

The Taskforce had oversight from a project board consisting of key members of the Modernising Energy Data initiatives across government, innovation and regulation. The Taskforce ran from April 2021 until December 2021.

Review of the EDTF recommendations

Energy Data Taskforce: Two Years On

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VIDEO: Final report launch event on 17th January 2022 for the Energy Digitalisation Taskforce.

The Outputs

The six high-level recommendations from the Taskforce are as follows:

  • RECOMMENDATION 1: Unlock value of customer actions and assets – Crucially building trust and delivering control through a Consumer Consent portal, delivering a seamless ability for assets to connect and benefit from system value by mandating all large customer energy assets to be energy enabled. Consumer protection will need to be enhanced to reflect different risks and smart meter data needs to be released for the public good.
  • RECOMMENDATION 2: Deliver interoperability – The sector needs to deliver interoperability through the development and deployment of four Public Interest Digital Assets with particular focus on a ‘Digital Spine’ To ensure interoperability we can build on some existing assets but require Data Sharing Fabric, Data Catalogue and development of some limited but crucial Standards.
  • RECOMMENDATION 3: Implement new digital governance approach and entities – Governance of new digital assets and actions will be important and need to be developed soon. Governance around public interest assets, interacting algorithms and opening up regulated assets to digital competition will be important. There also needs to be a Digital Delivery Body established by Government to deliver the public interest assets quickly to be subsequently handed over to the sector.
  • RECOMMENDATION 4: Adopt digital security measures – Digital security principles and interventions are crucial but need to be fit for digital purposes with particular focus on cascade impactszero trust principles and a sharing culture.
  • RECOMMENDATION 5: Enable carbon monitoring and accounting – Carbon visibility sits at the heart of all we propose, but much greater carbon visibility and standardisation is required. We recommend that dynamic carbon monitoring is put in place, and an open carbon standard needs to be deployed economy wide.
  • RECOMMENDATION 6: Embed a digitalisation culture – Digitalisation is not valued or understood in all parts of the energy sector, with not enough skills or value given to digital assets and activities. BEIS should employ a Chief Data Officer and importantly investors and the rating agencies need to value digital assets as well as their traditional value assessment for infrastructure.

Read the Report

Delivering a Digitalised Energy System

Harnessing Digital & Data

Utilising a range of services, tools and expertise, such as data science, algorithms and artificial intelligence or access existing consumer and technical data.

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