One of the issues identified by Ofgem’s Project Discovery was that imbalance prices may not rise sufficiently at times of high demand to elicit extra supply or demand response. A proposed solution is to sharpen the price signals, by making imbalance prices closer to the marginal cost of balancing actions. However, Project Discovery also recognised that such a move could reduce incentives to invest in intermittent sources of renewable energy – mainly wind, but perhaps also solar and wave. The output of such renewable sources is inherently difficult to forecast and they are therefore more exposed to imbalance charges.

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