Brits in line for payout if they use less energy on Wednesday night as National Grid scheme kicks in

28 November 2023, 22:23

Brits are in line for a payout if they use less energy
Brits are in line for a payout if they use less energy. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

Brits are in line for a payout if they reduce how much energy they use on Wednesday.

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The National Grid is booting up its Live Demand Flexibility Service (DFS), which will come into effect between 5pm and 6.30pm.

Households will be offered cash to reduce their energy consumption, though it is unclear how much consumers could bank.

The National Grid will pay energy suppliers for each unit of electricity - a kilowatt hour - saved, and then businesses will decide how much to pass on to their customers.

They can keep the lights on but are asked to avoid using appliances such as washing machines.

The scheme is designed to help move electricity use out of peak times.

Read more: Met Office warns of disruption as Britain faces 'widespread snow' and -8C temperatures

Analysts also point to an anticipated high demand for power amid plummeting temperatures while wind speeds are low - reducing how much a turbine can put out.

The National Grid says supplies of electricity are not a problem.

"Our forecasts show electricity supply margins are expected to be tighter than normal on Wednesday evening," a spokesperson said.

"It does not mean electricity supplies are at risk and people should not be worried.

"These are precautionary measures to maintain the buffer of spare capacity we need."

Read more: Exact time snow to hit UK as Met Office issues weather warning for later today

More than a million businesses and households are signed up to the scheme, which paid out £11m last year.

It was implemented after Russia's invasion of Ukraine exacerbated supplies in 2022.

Temperatures are dropping and snow is even a possibility in the coming days.

David Oliver, a Met Office deputy chief meteorologist, said: "Along the boundary of the two air masses lies a zone across southern and central Britain where snowfall could develop fairly widely.

"Snow in any affected area is unlikely to be anything more than transient and short-lived, but it could lead to small totals and some disruption over a few hours before melting."