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  • AMR
    Automatic Meter Reading
  • Annual Agreed Quantity (AAQ)
    The annual volume of gas consumed, measured in kilowatt hours (kWh)
  • Availability Charge
    The charge for the amount of power made available to the clients' premises. It is related to the agreed supply capacity. The distribution company sets the rate and it is expressed in kVA


  • Base Load
    The minimum amount of electricity being used during non-operational hours
  • Bearish
    Believing that market prices are about to fall
    The British Electricity Transmission and Trading Arrangement introduced in 2005 covering England, Wales and Scotland, replacing NETA which did not cover Scotland
  • Bilateral Energy Trading
    Trading whereby two parties (for example a generator and a supplier) enter into a contract to deliver electricity at an agreed time in the future
  • Bullish
    Believing that market prices are about to rise


  • Calorific Value
    The ratio of energy to volume measured in mega joules per cubic meter (MJ/m3)
  • Capacitor
    An electrical device that can be used to oppose reactive power in electrical circuits.  The effect is to compensate for reactive power charges on consumers electricity bills caused by a poor power factor, reduce the current required and to reduce kVA demand.  Capacitors are the key component of Power Factor Correction equipment
  • Carbon Credits
    The key component of attempts to mitigate the growth of greenhouse gases (GHGs) One Carbon Credit is equal to one ton of Carbon.   M&C Energy Group will sell carbon credits to commercial and individual customers, to assist with regulatory compliance or to organisations who are interested in lowering their carbon footprint on a voluntary basis
  • Carbon Emissions Trading Scheme
    A scheme in which greenhouse gas emissions are controlled by setting a cap on total transmissions and allowing the market sectors to reach an economically balanced response via trading of emissions allowances. Allowances are allocated initially, perhaps through a free distribution or through an auction, and the total allocation is adjusted periodically
  • Carbon Footprint
    A carbon footprint is "the total set of GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions caused directly and indirectly by an individual, organization, event or product" (UK Carbon Trust 2008)
  • Carbon Offsetting
    A carbon offset is a financial instrument aimed at a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon offsets are measured in metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent (CO2e) and may represent six primary categories of greenhouse gases.  One carbon offset represents the reduction of one metric ton of carbon dioxide or its equivalent in other greenhouse gases
  • Carbon Trust
    An independent not-for-profit company set up by the government with support from business to encourage and promote the development of low carbon technologies. Key to this aim is its support for UK businesses in reducing carbon emissions through funding, supporting technological innovation and by encouraging more efficient working practices
  • CCL Discount
    The benefits of the Climate Change Levy Discount Scheme result in up to 80% discount on the CCL in return for meeting energy or carbon saving targets
  • CCL Relief
    A reduction of the CCL agreed as part of a trade sector Climate Change Agreement
  • Certified Emissions Reductions (CER)
    A Certified Emission Reduction (CERs) is the technical term for the output of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects, as defined by the Kyoto Protocol.  It is one method of Carbon Offsetting
  • CHP
    Combined Heat and Power
  • Clean Development Mechanism (CDM)
    The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) is one way of classifying Carbon reductions.  Defined, in Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol, it allows a country with an emission-reduction or emission-limitation commitment under the Kyoto Protocol (Annex B Party) to implement an emission-reduction project in developing countries. Such projects can earn saleable certified emission reduction (CER) credits, each equivalent to one tonne of CO2, which can be counted towards meeting Kyoto targets
  • Climate Change Agreement
    Enables businesses in specific sectors to qualify for a reduction in Climate Change Levy in return for energy efficiency improvements
  • Climate Change Levy (CCL)
    A charge introduced by the Government on 1 April 2001 on UK non-domestic fuel. The Government's aim when introducing the levy was to encourage business to use less energy, and contribute to the reduction of Carbon Dioxide emissions
  • Consumer Council for Water
    Non departmental public body representing the interests of water consumers in England and Wales
  • Consumer Council for Northern Ireland 
    Independent organisation representing consumers on water and sewerage matters in Northern Ireland
  • CO2
    The most well-known Green House Gas (GHG), CO2 is the main gas measured in emissions-reductions targets.  It’s presence in the atmosphere retains heat around the planet.
  • Cubic Metre (m3)
    The standard unit used by UK water companies to record the volume of water used by their customers.  1 cubic metre of water is the equivalent of 1,000 litres


    Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
  • DPEI
    Department of Productivity, Energy and Industry, formerly known as the Department of Trade and Industry
  • Display Energy Certificates (DEC)
    Display Energy Certificates (DECs) show the actual energy usage of a building, the Operational Rating, and help the public see the energy efficiency of a building. This is based on the energy consumption of the building as recorded by gas, electricity and other meters
  • Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI)
    Responsible for ensuring that the water companies in England and Wales supply safe drinking water that is acceptable to consumers and meets the standards set down in law
  • Drinking Water Inspectorate for Northern Ireland (DWINI)
    Responsible for regulating drinking water quality in Northern Ireland
  • Drinking Water Quality Regulator (DWQR)
    Responsible for ensuring that the water in Scotland is safe to drink


  • EEX
    The European Energy Exchange; German market which is used as a reference for continental electricity prices
  • EFW
    Energy from Waste
  • Emission Reduction Units (ERUs)
    These are tradable units generated by projects in developed countries.  Each ERU is equal to one tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent gases
  • Emissions Trading
    Emerging as a key instrument in the drive to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Emission trading is to ensure that the emission reductions take place where the cost of the reduction is lowest thus lowering the overall costs of combating climate change
  • Energy Audit
    An inspection survey and analysis of energy flows in a building, process or system with the objective of understanding the energy dynamics of the system under study.  An energy audit is conducted to seek opportunities to reduce the amount of energy input into the system without negatively affecting the output.  Beyond simply identifying the sources of energy use, an energy audit seeks to prioritize the energy uses according to the greatest to least cost effective opportunities for energy savings
  • Energy Consultants
    Consultants who provide services to meet the needs of customers as help to manage energy and consumption costs
  • Energy Efficiency
    A measure of the outputs provided, compared to the energy input into a process. Using less energy/electricity to perform the same function improves energy efficiency. "Energy conservation" is a term which has also been used but it has the connotation of doing without in order to save energy rather than using less energy to do the same thing and so is not used as much today. Many people use these terms interchangeably
  • Environment Agency (EA)
    Executive non-departmental public body responsible for protecting and improving the environment in England and Wales
  • EU Allowance (EUA)
    These units are specific to the EU Emission Trading Scheme, (EU ETS) which started in 2005, and are equal to one tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent gases
  • European Emissions Trading Scheme
    This is the world's first large-scale carbon trading market, set up in 2005 under the Kyoto Protocol as a way to use the market to reduce industry pollution. European market reports a monthly European market report, covering energy issues across Europe
  • European Union Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS)
    A trading scheme across Europe to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and combat the serious threat of climate change. Phase I of the Scheme began on 1 January 2005 and finished on 31 December 2007. Phase II began on 1 January 2008 and will finish on 31 December 2012 to coincide with the first Kyoto Protocol commitment period


  • Forwards Contract
    An agreement to buy electricity from another party at a specified time in the future at a specified price with money changing hands at the delivery date.
  • Fossil Fuel
    Fuels which have been formed from the organic remains of prehistoric plants and animals (coal, oil and gas)
  • Front Month
    Prices for forward contracts starting with the next month
  • Front Quarter
    The contract for delivery in the next traded quarter
  • Front Season
    The contract for delivery in the next traded season
  • Fundamental Analysis
    Analysis based on underlying market factors influencing prices such as demand, supply, inventories and world economic growth


  • Gigawatt (GW)
    A unit of power equal to 1 billion watts; 1 million kilowatts, or 1,000 megawatts
  • Generation Fuel Mix
    The ratio of utilisation of primary energy sources to generate electricity


  • Heating Oil
    No. 2 fuel oil, a distillate fuel oil used either for domestic heating or in moderate capacity commercial-industrial burners
  • Heavy Crude
    Crude oil with a high density due to the presence of a high proportion of heavy hydrocarbon fractions
  • Hedge
    The initiation of a position in a futures or options market that is intended as a temporary substitute for the sale or purchase of the actual commodity. The sale of futures contracts in anticipation of future sales of cash commodities as a protection against possible price declines, or the purchase of futures contracts in anticipation of future purchases of cash commodities as a protection against the possibility of increasing costs


  • I/C (Interconnector)
    A physical connection between two countries enabling the import or export of energy
  • ICE
    The Intercontinental Exchange, where London Brent oil and carbon is traded
  • IGT
    Independent Gas Transporter
  • IRR
    Internal Rate of Return


  • Jet Fuel
    Kerosene-type; high-quality kerosene product used primarily as fuel for commercial turbojet and turboprop aircraft engines


  • kVArh
    Chargeable units on electricity bills that result from a poor power factor. The charge can be eliminated by the installation of power factor correction equipment
  • Kyoto Agreement
    A protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, it establishes legally binding commitment for the reduction of four greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexafluoride), and two groups of gases (hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons) produced by "annex I" (industrialized) nations, as well as general commitments for all member countries


  • Long Positions
    Traders holding the commodity or an option on the commodity and are willing to sell
  • Long Term
    Time period approximately 90 calendar days ahead of today


  • Marginal Costs
    The cost of the last unit of electricity generated in the least efficient generator unit used to cover demand
  • Maximum Demand
    The maximum amount of electricity used in any half hourly period, used as a chargeable item on many supplier invoices
  • Maximum Import Capacity
    Formerly known as Authorised Supply Capacity (ASC), this is a chargeable line on electricity bills in the UK, for the amount of energy that can be taken as a maximum within any half hour period
  • Medium Term
    Time period approximately 30 to 90 calendar days ahead of today
  • Mogden Formula
    Formula used by UK water companies to calculate charges for the conveyance and treatment of effluents discharged to the public sewer network
  • MOP
    Meter Operator
  • MPAN
    Meter Point Administration Number – the unique reference number for all electrical supplies in the UK
  • MPRN
    Meter Point Reference Number – the unique reference number for all gas supplies in the UK


  • Neutral Look
    Market Sentiment does not give a clear indication of where prices will settle in the coming day's trading activity
  • NETA - New Electricity Trading Arrangements
    The New Electricity Trading Arrangements (NETA), a complex project to reform the way that electricity is traded in England and Wales
  • NGC
    National Grid Company, the company which runs the England and Wales Balancing Mechanism and transmission system
  • The Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation (NIAUR)
    An independent non-ministerial government department set up to ensure the effective regulation of the Electricity, Gas and Water and Sewerage industries in Northern Ireland.
  • Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA)
    Responsible for advising on, and implementing, the Government's environmental policy and strategy in Northern Ireland


    Office of Gas and Electricity Markets.  The regulator of gas and electricity markets in England and Wales
    Office of Water Services.  The economic regulator of the water and sewerage sectors in England and Wales


  • Pass-through charge
    A pass-through cost is a cost that is charged to the energy supplier, but is then "passed through" directly to the consumer.
  • Peak
    Delivery of the same amount of electricity in each half hour period between the times of 07:00 and 19:00 on each week day in the delivery period
  • Power Factor
    A measurement of the relationship between electricity used by the consumer compared to the total power supplied.  It is a mathematical relationship between kVA supplied and kW used.  A low Power Factor can cost consumers money and can be corrected with the installation of appropriate equipment usefully used by the consumer
  • PPA
    Power Purchase Agreement


  • Q1
    The period of the forward curve starting in January and ending in March inclusive
  • Q2
    The period of the forward curve starting in April and ending in June inclusive
  • Q3
    The period of the forward curve starting in July and ending in September inclusive
  • Q4
    The period of the forward curve starting in October and ending in December inclusive


  • Renewable Energy
    Energy generated from natural sources (naturally replenished) such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides and geothermal heat


  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
    Scotland's environmental regulator responsible for protecting and improving the environment in England and Wales
  • Sewerage
    Waste matters discharged into the public sewer system through a series of drains and pipes.  Also known as wastewater or sewage
  • Short Term
    Time period approximately 1 to 30 calendar days ahead of today
  • Spot Market
    The Within-Day gas contract, i.e. gas for delivery within the current trading day
  • Standing Charge
    Also known as fixed charge, this typically covers the cost of reading and maintaining energy supply meters, sending bills and dealing with enquiries
  • Surface Water 
    Rainwater that falls onto domestic and commercial premises and public highways
  • Supply Agreement
    A contract between a supplier and the customer to supply electricity at an agreed tariff for an agreed duration of supply contracts are of 12, 18 or 24-month duration but longer and shorter are possible
  • System Buy Price (SBP)
    The price paid in the Balancing Mechanism by a party that requires more energy to meet its contractual commitments. Prices are often volatile and very high


  • Terawatt Hour (TWh)
    The equivalent to one thousand gigawatt hours (GWh)
  • Therm
    This is a unit of measurement for gas. 1 Therm is equal to 29.3071kWh
  • Trade Association
    An association of firms that operate in a specific industry
  • Trade Effluent
    Any liquid waste that is discharged from premises being used for a business, trade or industry
  • Trading
    Buying and selling energy
  • Trend
    The general direction of price movement.


  • Underlying
    The stock, commodity, futures contract, or cash index against which the futures or options contract is valued


  • Volatility
    A measure of the rate of fluctuations in the relevant market price, often referred to as historical volatility and is calculated from the last twenty published closing prices
  • Voltage
    The rate at which electrical energy is used in a circuit. Usually determined by the rating of the equipment being used and the local distribution network


  • Water Industry Commission for Scotland (WICS)
    Non-departmental public body with statutory responsibilities to manage the Scottish water industry
  • Waterwatch Scotland
    National complaints handling body for all water customers and the consumer representative body for the water industry in Scotland


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  • Yield
    The proportion of heavy or light products which can be derived from a given barrel of crude oil


  • Zeebrugge
    The hub in Belgium where Belgian gas contracts are traded. This represents the continental end of the gas interconnector