Policy Submissions

S1045 - Future arrangements for the electricity system operator: its role and structure


The System Operator (SO) has a key role in the electricity system. Ofgem think that the SO’s role needs to evolve, to ensure it is well placed to both respond to and help facilitate the transformation of the electricity system over the coming decades.


Ofgem also think further separation between National Grid’s electricity SO and electricity Transmission Owner (TO) functions would be in the interest of consumers.

Having worked closely with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and National Grid on the options, Ofgem are proposing that the SO become a more independent company within the National Grid group (NG Group). 

The IET Energy Policy Panel (EPP) welcomes this consultation from Ofgem and seeks the views of our members on their current thinking on the proposed approach for implementing any changes to the role of the electricity system operator. 

The EPP will respond to all the questions posed in this consultation and therefore seek input from the IET membership across the whole of this consultation. The questions posed are as follows: 

  • Chapter: Two
    • Question 1: What are your views on our proposed objectives for the SO (set out in paragraph 2.1)?
    • Question 2: What are your views on our expectations for how the SO should seek to achieve these objectives?
    • Question 3: Do you agree with our proposals for what licence changes are needed to support these objectives?
    • Question 4: What are your views on the extent to which we should set specific or general obligations for the SO?
  • Chapter: Three
    • Question 1: Do you agree that greater separation between NG’s SO functions and the rest of the group is needed?
    • Question 2: What are your views on the additional separation measures we are proposing?
    • Question 3: What are your views on our proposed approach for implementing these changes?
  • Chapter: Four
    • Question1: What are your thoughts on our proposed approach for implementing the proposed changes set out in this consultation?
    • Question 2: What further evidence should we consider in finalising our impact assessment of the proposals on the SO’s roles and level of independence?

The consultation document can he found at:


Members contributing are asked to state their relevant experience. All inputs will be treated confidentially in the production of a corporate view and individual contributors will not be named. “Member” should be interpreted as IET technician members, members and fellows.

Additional Information

This consultation is the third of a series that are closely related in many ways; the other two being the BEIS/Ofgem “Call for evidence; a smart, flexible energy system” (CfE) and Ofgem’s consultation on industry code governance.

The IET has played a leading role in catalysing the debate about the future development of the GB power system with both the Power Network Joint Vision (www.theiet.org/pnjv) and the on-going Future Power System Architecture programme (www.theiet.org/fpsa).

We are very pleased that the case we made for whole system thinking has now been widely accepted by BEIS and Ofgem and the wider stakeholder community.

View more details of this submission

Keywords and Search Terms GB Electricity System Operator, Ofgem, National Grid, Future Power System, Architecture, Power Network Joint Vision