Incremental changes to charging methodologies happens through changing the industry codes (CUSC, DCUSA and BSC). Industry codes are 'live' documents, meaning they can be changed by parties raising Code Modifications.
This process of modifying codes is the Open Code Governance process. Modifications can be proposed by code parties and, in some cases, other interested parties including Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland.
Each code has a panel or committee that oversees the assessment of proposed changes to that code. A general rule is that changes should only be made if they better facilitate that code’s ability to meet its objectives.
For some proposed changes, the code’s panel will also make the final decision on whether implementation is appropriate, but this is not always the case. Certain modifications require consent from Ofgem's governing body, the Authority.
More information on industry code governance can be found on Ofgem's site here.
Significant changes to charging methodologies can happen through a Significant Code Review (SCR). Ofgem will undertake Significant Code Reviews (SCRs) from time to time. An SCR provides a role for Ofgem to holistically review a code-based issue (for the main commercial industry codes) and speed up industry reform.
More information on the SCR process can be found on Ofgem's site here.
Coordinating multiple significant changes
Charging Futures is a new coordinated approach to considering significant code reform related to access and charging arrangements. It takes a more strategic view of access and charging change by:
- making recommendations for significant change, and;
- recommending how these should be taken through the Open Code Governance process as individual modifications or as an SCR.