Home Estate Planning Ofgem to investigate claims of wind farms overcharging billpayers millions

Ofgem to investigate claims of wind farms overcharging billpayers millions

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Energy regulator Ofgem is investigating the claims that wind farms may have incorrectly added close to £51m to taxpayer bills since 2018.

A Bloomberg report found that 40 out of 121 studied projects overstated their output by ten per cent on average and one-sixth (27) wind farms were found to be overstating by at least 20 per cent.

Ofgem said it was investigating the alleged behaviour and has asked the Energy System Operator (ESO) to look into the matter.

 “Ofgem will work closely with the ESO to consider all the facts and if it finds evidence of egregious action or market abuse, enforcement action will follow,” the spokesperson told City A.M.

“We will continue to work to protect market integrity and the best interests of consumers, as demonstrated by the recent cases we have concluded against generators who charged excessive prices behind transmission constraints.”

The report has reached government ears and parliamentary under-secretary of state for nuclear and networks Andrew Bowie said in response to its findings: “It is completely unacceptable to overcharge for people’s bills.

“British energy generators must operate at the highest standards,” he added.

Bloomberg caveated its report saying that while it is “impossible to determine precisely how much bill payers have had to pay due to such overstatements, but by assuming a similar rate of overestimation during the times that those 40 farms were paid to stop generating, consumers would have overpaid an estimated £51m ($65m) since 2018”.

Jethro Bowell, a senior lecturer at the University of Glasgow and expert in energy forecasting, told Bloomberg: “If you are systematically overpredicting by a large margin then that is suspicious, the average error should be close to zero and they should be underpredicting as often as overpredicting.”

The UK now stands at 13.7GW operational capacity that’s 45 per cent of the European offshore wind total and 24 per cent of the global offshore wind total.

It also boasts the current and future largest offshore wind farms in the world, the former being Dogger Bank off the coast of Yorkshire and the latter being  Hornsea 3, which Danish energy giant Ørsted is set to construct.

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