Have you ever wondered how electricity moves power plants to homes and businesses across the country? You pay your business energy supplier each month to provide electricity, but how does it actually work? Well, that’s where the electricity distribution network comes into play.
We explore the electricity distribution network in detail and the purpose of distribution network operators.
What is an electricity distribution network?
An electricity distribution network is a high voltage transmission grid across England and Wales owned by The National Grid. They connect to the distribution network operators (DNOs) who deliver to homes and business property through privately-owned power lines and underground cables.
What is a DNO?
A DNO stands for a distribution network operator. The distribution network operator is the company that operates and owns the infrastructure that connects the energy supply to your premises.
What are DNOs responsible for?
District network operators are responsible for the following aspects:
- Cables – both underground and overhead
- Moving the supply to the property meter
- Connecting premises to the electricity network
However, they are not responsible for the following:
- The National Grid
- Generating and selling electricity
Who operates the electricity distribution network?
There are eight distribution networks operated by six different companies. These power homes and commercial properties. Below is a list of the DNOs, and a table with each individual operator’s information.
A list of electricity distribution network operators
Here’s a list of the six different electricity distribution network operators:
- Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks
- Scottish Power Energy Networks
- Electricity North West
- Northern Powergrid
- UK Power Networks
- Western Power Distribution
The table below shows the coverage of each DNO:
Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) per region
This table shows the distribution network operators per region with their key details so you can identify your network operator and contact them with any queries or issues.
What is an IDNO?
An IDNO is an independent distribution network operator; these companies develop local electricity distribution within the DNO network. The IDNOs will also operate and maintain these networks.
One clear difference between the two is that the independent distribution network operators are not bound to specific regions. They can offer their services across England and Wales with no restrictions.
List of IDNOs in the UK:
Here’s a list of registered independent distribution network operators in England and Wales:
How do I find out who my electricity distribution network operator is?
You can use the Energy Networks Association search tool. Simply enter in your postcode to begin the search.