What is the Excess Capacity Charge (DCP161)?

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The Excess Capacity Charge, or DCP161, is a legislation, introduced from April 2018, that could affect business electricity customers who have a half-hourly settled meter.

The DCP161 is a change to the DCUSA (Distribution Connection and Use of System Agreement).

The change will remove the excess capacity charge discount that has previously been applied in circumstances where customers breach their contracted capacities.

When will the Excess Capacity Charge be implemented?

The implementation of the Excess Capacity Charge (DCP161) is 1st April 2018

Why is it being introduced?

The change proposal DCP161 is being introduced to recover the additional costs that DNOs (Distribution Network Operators) can incur when customers exceed their available and contracted capacity levels. The new rates should better reflect the costs incurred, or reasonably expected to be incurred, by the DNO Party in its Distribution Business.

Who has introduced the charge?

The new measure is being introduced by Ofgem.

Will the charge affect my business?

This change will affect all Half Hourly metered premises who exceed their agreed consumption capacity rates (kVa).

It does not apply to export capacity or EDCM customers.

What is the impact on my business?

Additional charges for the excess amount will be introduced which could be up to three times higher than the standard rate. The applicable rates will vary by region and voltage, with costs expected to be higher in areas where there is a higher demand for capacity. Depending on the consumption profile, if the supply regularly exceeds its assigned available capacity, this change is expected to increase overall electricity costs.

Any sites that are incurring excess capacity charges will need to agree a revised capacity or take energy-saving measures to reduce their maximum demand.

How will the Excess Capacity Charge appear on my bill?

What can you do?

  • If you want to consider increasing your capacity, it is essential to understand the maximum demand recordings and agree a new capacity in accordance with these figures (this will need to be done via your local DNO – Distribution Network Operator)
  • You may need to assess energy saving measures within your business and monitor ongoing performance of maximum demand figures

If you are unsure of any of the above or wish to discuss further, please do not hesitate to contact us by emailing [email protected].

If you would like to investigate this further, please visit the Ofgem website. (Please note that the implementation date was deferred until April 2018).

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