Consumer views on sharing half-hourly settlement data

Reports, plans and updates

Market-wide settlement reform can expose energy suppliers to the true cost of supply of their customers in any half-hour period and put incentives on them to help their customers shift their consumption to times when electricity is cheaper to generate or transport. We are taking forward market-wide settlement reform to facilitate a smarter, more flexible energy system and to empower consumers to take an active role in the energy system transition as the sector decarbonises.

In order to settle customers half-hourly, suppliers need access to their customers’ half-hourly consumption data from their smart meter. Under the current rules, domestic consumers’ half-hourly data can only be accessed for settlement if they have given opt-in consent, and suppliers can only access half-hourly data from microbusinesses for settlement if they have not opted-out. In March 2018 we surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,467 GB bill payers to explore consumer views on the sharing of half-hourly consumption data, in order to develop our thinking on the most appropriate future rules for suppliers’ access to half-hourly consumption data.

The results showed that consumers are generally far less concerned about half-hourly energy consumption data than other personal data. Around half of consumers are willing to share their energy consumption data where they can see personal benefit and around two-thirds of consumers are willing to share their data for settlement purposes. 

These insights have helped us to move forward with our work on the future rules for access to half-hourly electricity consumption data for settlement purposes, which we are consulting on separately. This consultation can be found in the related links on the right hand side of this page.

To follow up with us on this research, or for anything else related to market-wide settlement reform, please contact the Settlement Reform team at