You will have been aware that since April 2014, all maximum demand meters (technically, meters with profile classes from 5 to 8) have been changed to be “advanced” meters capable of being read remotely and recording Half Hourly (HH) consumption. However, so far there is no obligation for suppliers to settle, and by consequence invoice, these HH capable meters on an HH basis.
P272 is the name under which a modification to the current code of practice has been proposed and approved to make HH Settlement mandatory for all Metering Systems within PCs 5-8. This change, proposed by Ofgem, has been introduced because of the belief that the use of Non-Half Hourly (NHH) data is not as accurate and masks individual client behaviour.
This change is to be implemented by 1st April 2016. The change requires that suppliers use this data to settle profile classes 5-8 rather than a predetermined industry-wide forecast. This data can also be used for billing which means clients’ invoices will better reflect the cost of their energy.
This obligatory change is industry-wide and will be implemented by all suppliers.
This change should result in client bills that better reflect clients’ actual energy, distribution, and transmission costs. However, at this stage it is not possible to say how this will impact actual costs. This is because, depending on how the energy is actually used (i.e. the consumption profile), some clients will see a fall in costs and others might well see a rise.
A question that the industry has still not answered is how this will affect clients who have already agreed contracts with start and end dates respectively before and after the implementation of this change in April 2016. However, some clients might find that a number of suppliers will stop offering contracts with end dates beyond April 2016 for these types of meters.
As far as the existing infrastructure is concerned, if you have an AMR meter that can be remotely configured, it will already be capable of taking half hourly readings and it is unlikely you will require a meter change. This should apply to the vast majority of cases, although we expect a number of exceptions to this rule.
The transition from NHH to HH settlement and invoicing will also mean that your bills and some of the lines that appear on them will look different.