Jargon Within The Energy Industry : A Glossary Of Terms
Posted on Feb 14, 2023
It’s easy to get overwhelmed while wading through the energy industry. Whether you’re looking for a new supplier or simply trying to understand your business’ energy bill, there’s lots of new terminology to grasp. From understanding definitions, processes, and terminology – it can quickly feel like you’re trying to understand a foreign language. If you’ve ever found yourself wondering what is meant when we talk about ‘capacity’ or ‘demand’, then this post is for you! Here’s a helpful glossary of terms commonly used within the energy industry so that you have all the knowledge needed to make better-informed decisions on your business energy requirements.
Below we have provided an A-Z style of glossary to help explain some complicated and good-to-know terms.
This is the agreed amount of electricity load that can be supplied to a property. If you are renting or newly purchasing a property for your business operations this will be stated in your property’s Connection Agreement with the local DNO*.
Automatic Meter Read (AMR)
An automatic meter read is taken by a system that takes meter readings remotely. This data will be passed onto your business energy supplier for billing purposes.
Biomass energy or bioenergy, as it can often be referred to, is an energy sourced from organic materials, this includes matter from recently living organisms such as plants. This is considered a ‘carbon neutral’ method of generating energy.
Carbon credits are a rising form of credit that can be purchased on the voluntary carbon market. These are used to permit owners an allowance of carbon dioxide emissions. Also known as carbon offsets. Many businesses are now opting voluntarily to buy carbon credits in order to develop a ‘green business strategy’ that coincides with government plans to achieve net zero carbon.
Carbon neutrality means reaching a state in which there are net-zero carbon dioxide emissions. This can be achieved by either balancing the total amount of carbon dioxide removed with the total emitted or by completely eliminating the emission of CO2 from within society. Both are something governments across the world are hoping to achieve, as agreed.
*District Network Operator (DNO)
A district network operator or DNO is responsible for the installation and maintenance of electrical cabling, as well as the distribution of electricity to the supply point of the grid.
If you are attempting to contact your DNO, one way you can do this is by looking them up using your location information, such as postcode. Each district will have a different DNO.
Fixed Term Contracts
A fixed term contract is a supply contract decided with your energy provider for a fixed price over a fixed period of time.
Greenhouse Gas (GHG)
A GHG is simply a type of gas found in the atmosphere that traps heat. The main GHGs found in Earth’s atmosphere are water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone.
What is P272? P27what? You aren’t alone in the dark about P272. P272 is regarded as one of the biggest shakeups to the business electricity market since deregulation. Sounds more like a character out of star wars, but here are some facts on P272, which we have put together hopefully jargon free. If you unsure on how P272 affects your business please do not hesitate to contact us for free on 0800 781 7626, we will be delighted to help you further. You may also like to view our infographic and visit our support page dedicated to the P272 OFGEM legislation.
The Facts – What Is P272
P272 is a new regulation which has been implemented by OFGEM. It affects the way suppliers settle electricity consumption for businesses with a specified energy use. Resulting in sites being changed to half hourly.
Remember, remember the 5th November… “Guy Fawkes?”. No, no… this is when the P272 migration began! The deadline for all sites to be settled to Half-Hourly is 1st April 2017. Don’t be fooled by the date, it really is 1st April! Also, don’t be put off by the 2017 threat – it’ll be here before you know it!
The settlement is being put in place in order for suppliers to balance the amount of energy being purchased from the Generators. The aim for P272 is to make the readings more accurate via the half hourly consumption. This will provide distributors with more understanding on electricity use. This results in networks ensuring they are sufficiently developed and maintained.
Ultimately, P272 helps you and your business manage and also use the energy smartly. It gives you the opportunity to see where and when you are consuming energy. Also, a more accurate settlement which could lead to better tariff rates… something nobody would say no to, agreed?
Now you (hopefully) have a little more understanding of P272 here is how to prepare:
Learn if your portfolio is affected.
Speak to your supplier, they will be more than happy to explore your options with you.
Select your Half-Hourly Meter and Data Collector.
If your business has a maximum demand electricity supply categorised by profile classes:
05 06 07 08
And you have an Automated Meter Reading meter of which is capable of HH data collection and remote programming. Just to let you know… 160,000 sites are affected so it is definitely worth double, maybe even triple checking!
“How do I check?!” I hear you say? Simple… you just check the S number at the top of your electricity bill to find out your sites profile class.
Believe it or not, P272 can be very beneficial for you and here’s why:
You receive accurate billing
It offers you the ability to avoid peak times of electricity use
It gives you an insight on your energy usage
It allows you to make room for an opportunity of improvement and efficiency
This is an OFGEM regulation affecting ALL maximum demand meters and ALL electricity suppliers equally. If you’re being advised P272 does not affect your business, please let us double check this for you.
A Russian rocket blasted into space this month to investigate whether any methane gas is present on Mars, as part of the joint ExoMars project created by the European and Russian space agencies.
Methane is a gas created by living microbes, and if it were to be detected it would be a revelation in the space industry as it could prove that life exists or existed on the red planet, some 225 million kilometres away from the Earth (which is itself something of a shock, given that in 2003 Mars was a mere 56 million kms away).
We already know there is life-giving water on Mars. Just like the Earth it has ice caps, although the water they contain is more elusive. The American space agency NASA made a huge discovery in 2006 when it found there was water flowing through the planet in even the hottest months of the year, and that the ‘lines’ that appear on our satellite images of Mars are streaks of flowing salt water.
That’s when the questions ‘did life exist on Mars, and can we find out?’ really started to arise.
The ExoMars project involves sending up a Trace Gas Orbiter to sniff the Martian atmosphere for methane, and if the results are positive then this would establish that methane has been generated via geology or a biological process.
As part of the same mission, a stationary lander called Schiaparelli will test the technology for a subsequent mission – ExoMars 2018 – which will see a UK-built rover collect soil samples filled with water particles and drill below the planet’s surface to look for other signs of life. That’s when the search for Martian life will start in earnest.
These two projects combined will cost an eye-watering £900 million but isn’t it worth it for the chance to make one of the biggest discoveries of all time? What a time to be alive!
Planetary scientist Dr Peter Grindrod, from Birkbeck, University of London, who is funded by the UK Space Agency, certainly thinks so. “It’s incredibly exciting,” he enthused. “This is a series of missions that’s trying to address one of the fundamental questions in science: is there life anywhere else besides the Earth? Finding that life exists elsewhere in the solar system would be a huge discovery, so the evidence has to be strong. As they say, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.”
Wouldn’t it be amazing to find out if there really is Life On Mars, or if there has been in the past. It’s astonishing to think there could be more than just us Earthlings in our solar system!