Energy Systems Catapult and Elexon’s report on accurately tracking carbon in electricity markets

Elexon has worked with Energy Systems Catapult (ESC) on a paper which examines options to improve the tracking of carbon content in electricity markets.

The joint paper between ESC and Elexon aims to:

  • Explain the importance and opportunities that could arise from accurate tracking of carbon in electricity markets,
  • Provide a preliminary exploration of the current state of the art and options for improvement, and
  • Identify recommended next steps.

Harnessing digitalisation to track carbon at granular level

ESC and Elexon believe that if the GB energy market could harness the power of digitalisation to accurately track carbon across the system at a granular level in time and space, then it could open up significant opportunities to align power market reform with the implementation of ambitious carbon policy, as well as responding to consumer demand for zero carbon electricity.

To enable this, the challenge is to ensure that carbon is fully accounted for across the electricity system, right from generation to its eventual use.

The new report sets out how the industry could create the common rules, standards and processes to measure, track, report and verify the carbon content of electricity within the power system.

Existing rules could be extended for tracking carbon

Angela Love, Director of Future Markets and Engagement at Elexon said: “While the existing electricity market is not required to collect and share carbon intensity data, we believe, in principle, that existing rules, systems, governance and processes for measuring electricity production and consumption could be easily extended and re-purposed for tracking carbon.

“Under the BSC, Elexon already collects, shares and uses granular data produced by electricity generators, traded, re-traded and ultimately consumed on a thirty-minute basis.

“Using the BSC arrangements to track carbon could be a cost effect approach, rather than building entirely new processes and systems for tracking carbon.

“Looking ahead, Elexon is already working with Ofgem and the industry to implement systems and processes that will ensure all electricity is settled on a half-hourly (HH) basis using smart meter data from domestic and small non-domestic metering systems.”

Download the full report


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