Ofgem investigates Symbio Energy over Renewables Obligation and Feed-in Tariff payments

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Energy regulator Ofgem has opened an investigation into Symbio Energy Limited over its late payments into the Renewables Obligation (RO) and Feed-in Tariff (FIT) schemes.

Under the government’s RO schemes, energy suppliers must demonstrate they have sourced enough electricity from renewable sources to meet their obligation by presenting Renewables Obligation Certificates (ROCs) to Ofgem by 1 September.

If suppliers do not have enough ROCs to meet their obligation, they must have made up the shortfall by paying into a buy-out fund administered by Ofgem, by 31 August.

Suppliers that fail to comply in full must then make a late payment, including applicable interest, by 31 October.

According to the regulator, Symbio Energy failed to pay into the buy-out fund or present the required number of ROCs by the initial deadlines and the late payment deadline. The outstanding payment was made on 13 November 2020.

In addition to not meeting the RO deadlines, Symbio Energy reportedly missed three other payment deadlines over a four-month period for the government’s environmental schemes.

This includes one RO mutualisation payment, which suppliers must make to cover the shortfall in the previous year.

According to Ofgem, deadlines were also missed for two FIT quarterly levelisation payments.

This scheme provides payments to owners of small-scale renewable generators and is funded through levies on suppliers.

An Ofgem spokesperson commented on the announcement: “The opening of this investigation demonstrates that Ofgem takes compliance with the Feed-in Tariff and Renewable Obligation seriously, and that not making payments on time is unacceptable.

“The investigation will consider whether further enforcement action is required, which could include a financial penalty.”