Supporting green gas producers
We are committed to supporting green gas producers through our Entry Customer Forum.
The forum’s purpose is to ensure entry connections processes, standards and associated commercial arrangements are kept under review to promote standardisation across the networks, remove barriers, share best practice, enable efficiencies and improvements and respond to industry developments.
The Terms of Reference provides further detail. For an item to be added to the action plan, a proposal form must be completed. If you would like to know more about the forum, or are interested in joining, please contact us.
Agreed network position on in grid compression
There is a position of agreement amongst the gas distribution and transmission networks that if a developer wants to fund a compressor that the network will own and operate, the networks would support this. Compressor trials are being undertaken as part of the OptiNet project.
In January 2022, gas networks committed to two projects on In Grid compression. One is exploring a joint technical specification for Compressors and the other is exploring the Commercial and Regulatory side of In Grid Compression. The progress of these project are reported on at the Entry Customer Forum meetings.
Agreed forum position on network capacity identification
After a discussion in the Entry Customer Forum, there was a consensus that the approach of bilateral conversations with networks to discuss available capacity is currently the best approach. ENA will update the Forum as the National Energy Systems Map progresses.
Clarification regarding consistencies with performance evaluation testing
GasPTOs require a performance evaluation test, as set out in the Letter of Approval from Ofgem.
An ISO10723 test is a performance evaluation test for analytical systems, such as GS(M)R analysers. An ISO10723 test cannot be undertaken on inferred devices, such as GasPTOs.
If in doubt, please refer to the Letter of Approval from Ofgem. If you have any questions, please contact the network your site is connected to.
Target CV review
As requested by the Entry Customer Forum, in spring 2021 gas distribution networks undertook a review of how they set CV targets. The outcome of the review has been published and GDNs will review this on an annual basis.
We monitor SGS issues via a quarterly dashboard which is presented at each Entry Customer Forum. In September 2021 we held an SGS Refresher workshop where we recapped on expectations of SGS contractors who audit biomethane sites (directed the Letter of Direction) to ensure compliance with Thermal Energy Regulations.
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Distributed gas connection standardisation
Distributed gas entry is becoming ever more commonplace in the gas network. The technical requirements to connect these onshore and typically small scale sites differ from network to network.
A programme of standardisation has been ongoing since 2018. Progress on this programme is reported on at the Entry Customer Forum meetings.
Site acceptance testing
We have developed and agreed with our gas network members a list of required Site Acceptance Tests to allow biomethane sites to demonstrate their compliance to FWACV and Gas Safety (Management) Regulations. Once provided by GB service providers these methodologies will allow more efficient and effective methods of undertaking, recording and approving the testing of the grid entry unit gas quality and measurement systems allowing biomethane producers and networks to satisfy regulatory obligations.
Joint GDN statement on Siloxanes limit in gas distribution network system
In April 2021, the GDNs published an agreed Statement, outlining a Siloxanes limit in the gas distribution network system.
Agreed GDN Calibration and Test Gas Bottle Change Procedure
In May 2021, the GDNs published an agreed bottle change procedure, outlining the process for changing calibration and test gas bottles.
Agreed Network Guidance for Offline Spot Samples
In June 2021, gas networks identified sample limits as an area to standardise to provide guidance to DFOs to cross check their own samples prior to submission to the network their site is connected to. The guidance sheet was published in September 2021 and should be used for offline spot sampling and laboratory analysis.
Joint GDN Service Level Agreements for Daily Missing Files
Agreed GDN Service Level Agreements for daily missing files on biomethane sites. Published December 2021.
Outcome of review to standardise Local Gas Treatment
Statement published in December 2021 explaining the outcome of the review to standardise LGT across GDNs.
Commissioning Renewable Heat Incentive tariff guarantee biomethane plant
Following the passing into law of the reforms to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), over thirty biomethane plant successfully applied for a Tariff Guarantee as a route to commissioning under the RHI.
To support the commissioning of these plant we set out our view on the usual standards and practices for commissioning in an open letter.
Towards the end of 2019 Ofgem ran a call for evidence on industry standards and practices for commissioning equipment used in the production of biomethane to which we responded, setting out the following:
Industry standards and practices for commissioning
Our view of the industry standards and practices as is determined by IGEM GL5 Edition 3 – Managing New Works, Modifications or Repairs to any plant or system associated with the supply of fuel gas, and by IGEM/TD/16 Edition 2 which ensures that a network commissioning team is “properly trained, assessed as competent and certified as such by a recognised industry body”.
Implementation of the IGEM GL5 Edition 3 standard ensures compliance with all applicable health and safety legislation pursuant to biomethane plant commissioning, notably the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations, Electricity at Work Regulations, Gas Safety (Management) Regulations, Pipeline Safety Regulations and the Pressure Systems Safety Regulations. Adherence to these regulations will be common for all biomethane plant or the Delivery Facility Operator (DFO) that is commissioned.
Although the gas networks have their own versions of IGEM GL5 (PS6/G17) to account for different approaches to Remote Operable Valve (ROV), telemetry, odorisation processes etc., IGEM GL5 is the recognised industry standard to which all network-specific forms and certification that is completed must comply.
Accordingly, it is the agreed view of the gas networks that the two forms and process set out below reflect the “usual industry standards and practices for commissioning” as per the RHI legislation.
IGEM GL5 Edition 3
- For all assets upstream of the ROV Part D will need to be completed and signed off by a competent commissioning engineer.
- Gas networks will need to complete and have signed off by a competent commissioning engineer their sections, usually those relating to telemetry & ROV certification.
Safe Control of Operations – i.e. Non-Routine Procedure (SCO4)
- For DFO assets documentation is required to be completed and signed off showing capability of serviceable DFO assets to network ROV. This function demonstrates capability of operating and passing gas into the GDN system.
- Network SCO4 documentation shall be completed and approved in preparedness for the commissioning of network assets (i.e. ROV) to support gas flows into the system.
While the developers of a biomethane plant or DFO will have their own set of responsibilities, standards and practices we believe the above industry standards and practices are correct for commissioning biomethane plant and that continuing to follow this approach is appropriate to ensure networks conform to their legal responsibilities.