After over a year of deliberation through the parliamentary process, the Energy Act 2023, gained royal assent on 26 October 2023. In announcing the new law, the Government has called it the “biggest piece of energy legislation in the UK’s history”. As per the UK Government website, the key points of the Act are:

  • A more efficient energy system in the long-term – this will be done by increasing competition in Great Britain’s onshore electricity networks. This new model is expected to save consumers up to £1 billion off their energy bills by 2050.
  • A specific merger regime for energy networks will also be created under the Competition and Markets Authority – this will minimise the risk of mergers between energy network companies having detrimental effects on consumers and is estimated to save households up to £420 million over the next decade.
  • New measures for Energy Smart Appliances to prioritise safety and give consumers the confidence to transition to smart products – a smart electricity system could reduce system costs by up to £10 billion a year by 2050.
  • The government is expanding Ofgem’s remit to heat networks, allowing the regulator to set rules on excessive pricing and improve the quality of service for the half a million heat network consumers across the country.
  • The Act also includes new consumer protections and frameworks, incentivising the heating industry to invest in low-carbon heat pumps, and including powers to deliver the smart meter rollout by 2028 – which could generate total bill savings to households of £5.6 billion.

The Government has stated that the Act will help to deliver net zero by 2050, and the Act also makes the UK the first country to legislate for fusion regulation.

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