Energy Saving

DCP161: Another acronym you need to know about

The seemingly endless stream of new energy legislation will continue in April 2018 when DCP161 comes into force.

We have mentioned this legislation before in our blog on what ‘KVA’ means to your business, so check that out for some background on where this new amendment to the Distribution Connection and Use of System Agreement (DCUSA) came from.

What does it mean?

In short, DCP161 means that any Half Hourly (HH) meter drawing more than its assigned capacity of electricity (KVA) into a building will incur significantly higher charges than its agreed rate.

The added charges can be as high as three times your usual rate and could have significant impacts on businesses who don’t monitor their consumption effectively.  They are intended to cover the cost of the effect this has on your District Network Operator (DNO)…

[su_note note_color=”#c6e1f7″ text_color=”#1f70b8″ radius=”0″]…quick break… if all of these acronyms are boggling your brain, visit our jargon buster.  It should help you get your head around the energy industry’s tongue-twisting terminology.[/su_note]

Currently, anyone exceeding their KVA isn’t penalised financially, unless it is exceeded to an extent that it causes a power outage and requires costly repairs.

The charges DCP161 will incur depend on your business’ geographical area and voltage.  If demand is high for power near your premises, you’ll be charged more.

If this becomes a regular occurrence, you could expect your electricity bills to increase by a few per cent per year.

Half hourly meters – more control for everyone

The roll-out of P272 legislation across the UK was hailed by energy managers, allowing them to see more detail on what power is used, where and when (to within 30 minutes).  Clearly, it’s now also a major advantage for suppliers, who are using the extra information available to them to add on charges wherever they can.

Key points to consider

  1. If you don’t know what your site’s KVA is, you need to find out. Your supplier can tell you this or you could work with an expert to negotiate a higher KVA for you at the most advantageous rate.
  2. Find out if your building ever exceeds its KVA. If it does, you have a decision to make.  Often the cost of increasing your KVA can be cheaper than the charges your supplier will impose on you for exceeding it under DCP161.

Need some guidance?  We can help you decide whether you need to increase your building’s capacity. If so, we have the knowledge and connections within the energy industry to get you the best deal possible.

Get in touch today! 

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Paul JohnsonGroup Financial Director

Paul Johnson is very much a home-grown talent.

He joined Great Annual Savings Group in its infancy, fresh from a youth career as a professional footballer with Hartlepool United.  He quickly established a reputation within the business and aced all required accountancy qualifications in the space of four years to become the Group’s Management Accountant.

Several successful projects later, Paul was promoted to Head of Finance.  When the former FD left GAS, he took on the mantle of the business’ most senior finance professional; boasting a string of incredible achievements all under the age of 30.


“I have witnessed phenomenal growth at the Group over the many years I’ve worked here and I’m looking forward to guiding the Group into an exciting new chapter.”

Interesting fact:

Paul made his professional debut for Hartlepool United against Bournemouth in the Football League.  Some say Danny Ings still resides in his pocket to this day.