DCP 161 – Excess Capacity Charges

If your business uses a Half Hourly (HH) meter for its energy supply, make sure you’re ready for DCP 161 in April 2018 –
Excess Capacity charges are coming.

Ofgem will be introducing a new regulation to the DCUSA (Distribution Connection and Use of System Agreement), DCP 161. DCP 161 will apply Excess Capacity penalties for customers using HH meters, and these charges could be over three times higher than the standard rate applied for energy consumption.

In simple terms, if your business uses an HH meter and exceeds the electricity usage stated within your contract, you could be at risk of paying huge charges if your operations succeed the demand capacity allocated.

The penalty rates have not yet been publicly stated, but they will vary depending on region and voltage. Where demand for energy capacity is high, this will likely be reflected in the charges.

If your business is being affected by the P272 regulations (Profile Classes 05-08 NHH moving to HH meters), you should speak to your supplier and check what your available capacity is. It may not be clear what your capacity is until after your meter has been upgraded to Half Hourly, or until your first bill arrives, by which point you may have incurred Excess Capacity charges.

What should I do?

So you can avoid exceeding capacity levels and incurring more charges under DCP 161, you should know your site meter’s available capacity and maximum demand levels for the supply.

If your site is exceeding capacity levels and incurring penalty charges, it is advised that you speak with your supplier to agree on a revised capacity and take steps to reduce energy consumption in order to reduce your maximum demand.


If you’re uncertain about your business’s maximum demand capacity, or struggling to understand what the DCP 161 changes mean for your business then don’t hesitate to get in touch –  we’re here to help! You can call us directly on 0800 411 8830 or today you can request a callback today!

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