Call for Evidence
The Industry and Regulators Committee is launching an inquiry into the work of Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), a non-ministerial government department which regulates the UK’s gas and electricity markets.
Having initially focused on protecting the interests of consumers, Ofgem has increasingly been given responsibilities in relation to other areas, particularly the security of the UK’s energy supply and decarbonisation. In the Energy White Paper, the Government committed to including a requirement for Ofgem to carry out its regulatory functions in a manner consistent with securing the Government’s policy outcomes, including “delivering a net zero energy system while ensuring secure supplies at lowest cost for consumers”, in its proposed Strategy and Policy Statement for Ofgem.
This inquiry will consider Ofgem’s role in the transition to net zero and whether changes are needed to its objectives and powers or its role in the wider energy system. The inquiry will also examine how net zero relates to Ofgem’s other responsibilities such as affordability and the security of the UK’s energy supply, how Ofgem considers the interests of consumers, and Ofgem’s relationship to Government and Parliament.
The Committee is seeking evidence on the following questions:
- What role should Ofgem play in the transition to net zero? What changes, if any, should be made to its remit, responsibilities and resources?
- How well does Ofgem balance environmental objectives against its responsibilities in relation to affordability for consumers?
- How well does Ofgem fulfil its obligations to consumers? Does Ofgem take consumer views into account sufficiently, particularly those of vulnerable consumers?
- What implications will the transition to net zero have for the security of the UK’s energy supply? How does Ofgem currently manage issues relating to security of supply?
- Is Ofgem’s current system of price controls appropriate? Does it provide sufficient incentives to invest in the context of the transition to net zero?
- Is the current system of governance for the UK energy market appropriate to secure the transition to zero? What improvements could be made and what role should Ofgem play?
- Are Ofgem’s duties and powers appropriate and sufficiently clearly defined? Do Ofgem’s objectives conflict and, if so, how should any conflicts be managed?
- Is Ofgem’s relationship to Government and Parliament appropriate? Are there issues related to the split of responsibilities, transparency or accountability
- How does Ofgem compare to similar bodies internationally? What lessons can be drawn from the experience of other countries or jurisdictions?
- Are there any other aspects of Ofgem’s work that the Committee should consider?
You do not need to answer all these questions.
The deadline for written submissions is Sunday 22 August 2021.
Guidance for making submissions
Short, concise submissions, of no more than six pages, are preferred. A longer submission should include a one-page summary. Paragraphs should be numbered. Submissions should be dated, with a note of the author’s name, and of whether the author is acting on an individual or corporate basis. All submissions made through the written submission form will be acknowledged automatically by email. NB This does not constitute formal acceptance of evidence by the Committee, which takes place when the Committee meets.
Personal contact details supplied to the Committee will be removed from submissions before publication but will be retained by the Committee staff for specific purposes relating to the Committee’s work, such as seeking additional information.
Submissions become the property of the Committee, which will decide whether to accept them as evidence. Evidence may be published by the Committee at any stage. It will normally appear on the Committee’s website and will be deposited in the Parliamentary Archives.
Once you have received notification that your submission has been accepted as evidence and published by the Committee, you may publicise or publish it yourself, but in doing so you must indicate that it was prepared for the Committee. If you publish your evidence separately, you should be aware that you will be legally responsible for its content.
Diversity comes in many forms, and hearing from a range of different perspectives means that Committees are better informed and can more effectively scrutinise public policy and legislation. Committees can undertake their role most effectively when they hear from a wide range of individuals, sectors or groups in society affected by a particular policy or piece of legislation. We encourage anyone with experience or expertise of the issues under investigation to share their views with the committee, with the full knowledge that their views have value and are welcome.
This is a public call for evidence. Please bring it to the attention of other groups and individuals who may wish to respond.
If you have any questions or require adjustments to enable you to respond, please email HLIndustryRegulators@parliament.uk
This call for written evidence has now closed.Go back to Ofgem and net zero Inquiry