The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) will ensure small-scale electricity generators installing solar, wind or other forms of renewable generation with a capacity up to 5MW will be paid for each unit of electricity they sell to the grid – tracked by their smart meter.
Today, the department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) revealed that suppliers must implement the SEG before 1 January 2020.
The SEG requires any licensed supplier with over 150,000 domestic customers to provide at least one export tariff, a difference to the original proposal of suppliers with over 250,000 domestic customers. Smaller suppliers can take part on a voluntary basis but will be held to the same operational requirements as larger suppliers.
The design of the tariff is being left up to the individual supplier, which BEIS says is to allow for innovation and quick implementation. However, it is expected that over time tariffs will become increasingly smart.
Already, suppliers E.On and Octopus have provided export tariffs although E.On’s offering is limited to the first 500 customers and lasts only for a year. Octopus is currently offering two tariffs; a flat rate offering 5.5p per kWh of exported electricity and a variable rate dubbed Agile Octopus.
Chief Executive of Octopus Energy, Greg Jackson, said:
“These smart export tariffs are game changing when it comes to harnessing the power of citizens to tackle climate change. They mean homes and businesses can be paid for producing clean electricity just like traditional generators, replacing old dirty power stations and pumping more renewable energy into the grid. This will help bring down prices for everyone as we use cheaper power generated locally by our neighbours.”
The previous Feed-in Tariffs (FIT) scheme closed to new entrants from 31 March 2019, following consultations in 2015 and 2018, to reduce the costs to consumers as the price of installing solar panels came down.