What are TRIADs?
TRIADs are three half-hour settlement periods with the highest system demand. These are used by National Grid to determine the charges passed onto customers with half-hourly meters and are used to calculate payments for customers that are generating energy back into the grid. These three half-hour periods can occur any time between November and the end of February and must be separated by at least 10 full days (the 10-day gap is to stop individual major events having a huge impact on the overall TRIADs such as extreme weather or generator issues).
The strange thing with TRIADs is that as much as we forecast them, no one knows whether they were correct until the end of March. This is due to more accurate data becoming available over time, meaning that what was thought to be a TRIAD period sometimes wasn’t.
The confirmed TRIAD periods for 2016/2017 were:
(Source: 2016/2017 TRIAD data – National Grid)
What does this mean to businesses?
National Grid use these TRIAD period to determine Transmission Network Use of System (TNUoS) charges for half-hourly customers. It basically means that National Grid must invest to be able to maintain the demand, set by these three highest periods, all the time. These costs are then passed onto customers through their bills. It means that if you are on a ‘pass-through’ contract, your TNUoS charges will go up. If you are on a fixed contract, some of the non-commodity cost increase may be passed onto you if it reaches certain agreed thresholds set out in the contract terms.
For customers generating energy and exporting it back to the grid, this will affect how much they are paid for it and should be in strong positions to renegotiate any power purchase agreements (PPA’s) they have.