Ofgem invites energy innovators to express interest in a ‘regulatory sandbox’

In December 2016 Ofgem launched the Innovation Link to provide fast, frank feedback to energy entrepreneurs. Ofgem is now considering a ‘regulatory sandbox’. The sandbox would allow innovators to trial business propositions that will benefit consumers without incurring all of the usual regulatory requirements. In the longer term this will allow Ofgem to adapt the regulatory framework to the future developments in the sector.

Ofgem are calling innovators to come forward with information about the regulatory barriers they face in order for them to assess whether there is support that they can offer.

Options for support may include:

  • bespoke guidance: guidance on the interpretation of, or compliance with, regulatory requirements, which innovators can rely on for a defined period of time.
  • indication of approach to enforcement: guidance on how particular regulatory requirements might be enforced (in accordance with their Enforcement Guidelines) which would be valid for a particular period of time
  • derogations or exemptions from certain regulatory requirements: where relevant, they will refer innovators to exemptions or derogations that already exist
    and support them in their application.

For Ofgem to offer sandbox support they will need to be satisfied that: a) the innovation will deliver consumer benefits and consumers will be protected during the trial; and b) that the barrier faced is one that arises from requirements or provisions overseen by Ofgem. As such, there may be applications that they are unable to support.

Ofgem is seeking expressions of interest for the sandbox until Friday March 17th 2017.

To access the Expression of Interest form and read Ofgems open letter click here

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