Making electricity market data more openly available

As part of ELEXON’s commitment to improving access to electricity market data, we have now made some electricity Settlement data available via a new Open Settlement Data page.

We have also improved ease of access to our data on the wholesale electricity market by creating a ‘data area’ of our website. 

Making it easier to find electricity market data

We already make a significant amount of data available for free under an open data licence through the Balancing Mechanism Reporting Service (BMRS). The BMRS is the best source for tracking the electricity wholesale market in near real time, including the generation mix, demand and imbalance prices.  

The new data area on our website provides an overview of all the different electricity market data sets ELEXON makes available and where that data is provided. This is to help customers to navigate to the data they need.

Making more market data available for free

We have made five electricity Settlement datasets available using open data principles on our open Settlement data page.

These data items are from the ELEXON SAA I014 data flow. This data has been made available for free to anyone under an open data licence. Previously this data could only be accessed by BSC Parties and companies that had signed up to (and paid for) a Modification P114 data licence.

We are working to make more of the datasets covered by the P114 licence available on our open Settlement data page under an open data licence in the near future.

Clear and easy to use data

The datasets we have released on the open Settlement data page have been reformatted into CSV files that can be downloaded in ZIP (compressed) files. We have reformatted the data into a widely recognised open format to make it easy for anyone to open and use the data.

We have also provided descriptions of each data item released to give context to the data. This is to help analysts understand the data they are using.

We want to go further in making market data easier to access and use, and we are working to improve how we provide data to customers. As such open data principles will feed into the design of future data provision services.

Using existing data flows

The data flows we send out are in a pipe delimited format (the standard format for energy industry flows). You need to read our interface definition documents to interpret them. These flows were designed for efficient transfer of data for electricity companies’ operational processes. However, we have had feedback from customers that this format is less helpful when undertaking general analysis of Settlement data.

The new open Settlement data is not designed to replace what is available through the SAA I014 data flows. There are limitations to what we have provided as this data cannot be sent to customers by File Transfer Protocol (FTP) like the current SAA I014. The open Settlement data also does not contain the full set of SAA I014 data items. Therefore BSC Parties that are active in the market should still continue use the SAA I014.

What is SAA I014?

SAA 1014 contains the latest detailed breakdown of how the electricity system was settled in each of the 48 daily half hour Settlement Periods for each Settlement Run. The information includes prices for wholesale electricity during each Settlement Period, information on trading activity and trading charges applicable for each registered electricity market company.

Tell us your views

We want to improve our provision of data and make more data open. Therefore, if you use the data we are now making available, please let us know your views via email on whether it was useful and what else we can do. 

Update on ‘Open Data’ BSC Modification

To further support our work on making more data openly available we raised BSC Modification P398 in December 2019. The Modification will implement recommendations from the Energy Data Taskforce, which proposes that all data that we hold is assumed to be open unless the BSC Panel decides that there is a specific reason why it should not be.

The ambition of the Modification is to provide a way for companies to request that any data we hold be made available to them, or to other individuals including innovators, whether they are operating in the sector or not. The Modification is now going through the assessment procedure, and we will update on progress later this year.

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