Some households across the UK could earn discounts on their energy bills by cutting back on their use between 5pm and 6pm today.

The National Grid ESO (electricity system operator) is activating its demand flexibility service (DFS) for the first time.

The service entitles homes with smart meters, who are signed up to the scheme through their supplier, to discounts on future bills for cutting their electricity use during periods of high demand.

Customers will receive £3 for every unit of energy saved between 5pm and 6pm today.


There are 26 energy suppliers signed up to the scheme, including British Gas, Octopus Energy and EDF.

The National Grid ESO said the implementation of the DFS for the first time should not be seen as an announcement that energy supplies are at risk, saying “people should not be worried.

A spokesman said: “Our forecasts show electricity supply margins are expected to be tighter than normal on Monday evening.

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"We have instructed coal-fired power units to be available to increase electricity supplies should it be needed.

“We are also activating a Live Demand Flexibility Service event between 5-6pm tomorrow.

“This does not mean electricity supplies are at risk and people should not be worried.

“These are precautionary measures to maintain the buffer of spare capacity we need.”