COVID-19: Impact on operational activities
Please note that this page has now been archived and will no longer be updated. The page includes updates on how Coronavirus (COVID-19) is impacting Elexon and the BSC and what measures have been put in place to help BSC Parties.
On this page
BSC Insights: How Covid-19 has affected estimated data in Settlement13 November 2020
Insights: Update on Demand Reduction during COVID-19 lockdown1 July 2020
BSC Insights: Negative System Prices during COVID-1929 June 2020
Everything is being done to to assure the continuity of the services provided under the BSC and EMR. We are helping to ease the burden of our Parties who may be experiencing difficulties at this time. We will communicate any major changes to Elexon or the BSC via our regular channels, including this page.
Managing office facilities and visitor safety
As part of our ongoing efforts to manage our office environment during the COVID-19 pandemic we have undertaken reviews of our facilities and office processes to ensure we are providing a safe work environment for our staff and for any visitors to the London office.
Updated: 23 November 2020
Audits for 2020/21
All Audits will be held remotely for the 2020/21 Audit period.
Delay to finalisation of the BSC Audit
The 2019/2020 BSC Audit is nearly completed and will be finalised remotely. It is likely that there will be a delay to the final audit report so businesses can prioritise critical business as usual work.
The BSC Auditor, Elexon and the PAB will consider the current difficulties and restrictions when agreeing the audit scope for the 2020/2021 audit.
Delay to finalisation of BSC Audit ISAE 3000 Opinion
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the completion of the BSC Auditor’s fieldwork testing which supports its 2019/2020 International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000 Opinion.
At its May 2020 meeting, the BSC Panel approved a revision to the timescales of the report delivery. The ISAE 3000 Opinion will now be delivered to the Performance Assurance Board (PAB) at its September 2020 meeting, and to the BSC Panel at its October 2020 meeting. This is subject to any updated information that may further delay finalising the ISAE 3000 Opinion.
This part of the BSC Audit covers Central Volume Allocation (CVA) Meter Operator Agents (MOAs) and Central Systems and will now be finalised remotely. The delay in the delivery of the ISAE 3000 Opinion allows BSC Parties to prioritise critical business as usual work.
Reviewed: 24 November 2020
BSC payment terms will continue to operate as per usual. If a Party is unable to meet the payment terms, they should contact Elexon for advice.
Building closure and meetings
Updated: 11 February 2021
Remote meetings due to COVID-19
We have decided that we will not be re-opening the Elexon office to external visitors, save in exceptional circumstances, until the end of May at the earliest. We will therefore continue to hold all meetings, committees and workgroups virtually. We will keep this under review and refer to Government advice.
We have some measures in place, when staff start returning to the office.
To recognise this prolonged change to our working arrangements, we have a set of principles to be followed when holding online meetings. These principles will be highlighted at the beginning of each meeting to hopefully improve your virtual meeting experience.
Changes to the BSC
Updated: 29 June 2021
COVID-19 prioritisation ends on 30 June 2021
Credit Assessment Price (CAP)
Find announcements of any change in the Credit Assessment Price (CAP) on the Credit page.
Reviewed: 3 November 2020
Reducing Demand Capacity
BSC Parties are able to reduce the value of Demand Capacity (DC) (making the negative value closer to zero) of Supplier BM Units up to twice per BSC Season.
We recognise that the coming months will have unforeseen impacts to BSC Parties forecasts and therefore if you need to make a further reduction please contact [email protected]. Where a further reduction is relevant to the ongoing situation with Coronavirus we will consider further requests to reduce the DC beyond the twice per BSC Season limit.
Importance of accurate Demand Capacity
Generation Capacity (GC) and DC values are used in the calculation of Parties’ (if applicable) Credit Cover Percentage (CCP). Accurate values of GC and DC are essential to ensure the accurate calculation of CCP and CEI.
If the DC is overestimated the Party may need to provide a higher amount of Credit Cover than necessary.
Elexon’s day-to-day business
Reviewed: 24 November 2020
Consistent with the general advice of Ofgem, we are continuing to operate the BSC and EMR arrangements as usual. Both Elexon and its subsidiary, EMR Settlement Ltd (EMRS), are working as normal delivering our full range of services under the Balancing and Settlement Code, the Capacity Market and the Contracts for Difference schemes.
The closure of the office has so far not resulted in any issues to our services. However we remain vigilant and continue to monitor the situation closely.
Market-wide Half Hourly Settlement
Updated: 18 December 2020
With Ofgem’s agreement, we have adjusted the work plans for our two Market-wide Half Hourly Settlement (MHHS) working groups to take account of any industry resource constraints during the pandemic. While we continue activities with these working groups, we will continually review and (if needed) adjust the plans to ensure that they remain achievable.
To get the latest updates around MHHS developments then visit:
Updated: 1 July 2021
Estimation, Long Term Vacant (LTV) process and Site Inspection Visits: three month notice period to end derogations starts 1 July 2021
BSC Parties should read the full details of what is required during and at the end of this notice period. The relevant guidance notes have been updated.
- Half Hourly estimation during COVID-19
- Non Half Hourly estimation during COVID-19
- Non Half Hourly (NHH) Long Term Vacant (LTV) during COVID-19
- Site Inspection Visits during COVID-19
The three month notice period does not apply to Supplier Charges, Error and Failure Resolution and Technical Assurance.
BSC Modification P406 suspended Supplier Charge Serials SP08 and SP04 from the March 2020 Performance Assurance Reporting and Monitoring System (PARMS) reporting period. The decision to reinstate Supplier Charges will be made by the BSC Panel at a later date.
Supplier Charges are liquidated damages that Suppliers incur if they fail to meet Half Hourly or Non-Half Hourly performance levels. They compensate Parties disadvantaged by those who aren’t meeting the defined Standards set out in Section S of the BSC, and are one of the remedial Performance Assurance Techniques deployed by the PAB.
Error and Failure Resolution (EFR)
PAB agreed a strategy for managing performance issues and applying EFR for Suppliers in November 2020.
The strategy was agreed after the PAB discussed the challenges facing the industry in relation to obtaining the HH and NHH Settlement performance standards following the first COVID-19 lockdown.
Technical Assurance of Metering (TAM) suspension partly lifted.
At its July 2020 meeting, the Performance Assurance Board (PAB) approved recommendations for the TAM suspension to be lifted in respect to the rectification of Category 1 non-compliances.
This is in light of the rectification of Category 1 non-compliances meeting the PABs priority criteria of resolving Metering issues that have accumulated during the COVID-19 lockdown. Elexon and the Technical Assurance Agent (TAA) will be contacting Parties with outstanding Category 1 non-compliances, requesting updates on rectification progress.
Optional Technical Assurance Desktop Audits and Site Inspections
The PAB has agreed that optional Desktop Audits and Central Volume Allocation (CVA) Site Inspections can be carried out. Elexon has received positive response from the industry, with many BSC Parties participating in the optional audits.
Technical Assurance of Performance Assurance Party (TAPAP) checks
In March 2020, the PAB agreed to postpone TAPAP checks whilst the first full lockdown was in place. It agreed to resume the TAPAP technique from September 2020.
The technique is continuing to operate through further lockdowns, but only where Parties are able to facilitate the checks and with the consideration of prioritising BAU.
Updated: 5 November 2020
We are not recommending any changes to the load profiles – the calculations are designed to handle variance through GSP Group Correction.
There will be some misallocation of Non-Half Hourly volume, but the energy settled for Non-Half Hourly customers will be correct once meters are read.
Further, Suppliers will have used the profiles for their forecasting models and changes could have an adverse impact on their Energy Imbalances. However, we are monitoring the data as it becomes available and will report on any findings.
Inputs to the Profile Coefficient creation
We are not recommending any change to the Regression Coefficients.
Regression Coefficients are built from the previous three year’s Profiling Sample data for that season. Regression Coefficients were approved for use by the Supplier Volume Allocation Group (SVG) for Autumn to Winter 2020-2021 (the start of September to March) in August 2020. These coefficients have been released to industry as part of the Market Domain Data (MDD) process.
The outturn variables used in the daily production of Profile Coefficients are not affected – e.g. Noon Effective Temperature, sunset are determined on a given Settlement Date.
Future Regression Coefficients
The next Group Average Demands (GADs) for Spring to High Summer 2021 (calculated using analysis of the Profiling Sample data from April to September 2020) will be reviewed at by the Profile Expert Group (PEG) in November 2020. Hence, if the load profile shape for a weekday is significantly different to a typical year, the use of the GADs in creating future Regression Coefficients (and therefore influencing future Profile Coefficients) can be assessed.
The GADs are required to be recommended by the PEG to the SVG for approval for use in creating the Regression Coefficients. The use of calculated Regression Coefficients in the Profiling process are also subject to approval by the SVG.
Accuracy of the profiled data
We might see more variation in the Grid Supply Point Group Correction Factors (GGCFs) if the true demand shape is different to that used to build the Regression Coefficients. As part of our market monitoring processes, we monitor GGCFs and will report on any findings.
GGCFs scale the correctable SVA volume (primarily Non-Half Hourly volume) so that the net volume in a GSP Group matches the GSP Group Take (calculated from boundary point metering between the Transmission and Distribution Networks).
More information on Profiling
Reviewed: 20 November 2020
We must continue to operate the normal payment processes for Advice Notes due to the nature of the calculations. What we collect in as Trading Charges is what we pay out, so it’s important that we continue to operate the processes as normal.
Elexon Clear Limited or the Funds Administration Agent (FAA) releases Advice Notes for Trading Charges at different frequencies depending on a BSC Party’s operation. This is determined by the value of the Trading Charges each day. An Advice Note is released when the value totals +/- £500. The Advice Note is then payable in three business days.