Energy Jargon Buster


As part of our dedication to making energy easier to understand, we’ve created this handy ‘Jargon Buster’ to help you navigate your way through the confusing energy sector. You may recognise some of these terms and acronyms from your bills, invoices and other documents you get sent.

We’ve selected some of the most common terms but if you feel we have missed any, please get in touch and let us know as we would be happy to add them for you. Send us an email to discuss.

Actual Read Where a Meter Read has been provided to the Energy Supplier by the customer
AMR – Automatic Meter ReadingMeters that send a monthly Actual read to the Energy Supplier
AQ – Annual QuantityThe Estimated Annual Consumption for Gas Meters. Used for pricing energy contracts and billing
ASC – Available Supply CapacityThe amount of KVA that a Half Hourly Meter is authorised to receive by the regional network
Balancing and SettlementCharges that are collected from end users and paid to suppliers and generators to make sure the network has a balanced electricity supply
CCL – Climate Change LevyA government-imposed tax to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase energy efficiency. It is paid on Electricity and Gas consumption above a certain threshold, and there are exemptions
CED – Contract End DateDay your contract ends
CfD – Contracts for Difference CfDs incentivise investment in renewable energy by providing developers of large-scale projects with a guaranteed fixed price regardless of the wholesale cost. It replaced the Renewables Obligation in 2017
CM – Capacity Market A mechanism introduced by the Government to ensure that Electricity supply continues to meet demand as more volatile and unpredictable renewable generation plants come on stream
COP – Codes of PracticeDetails for the technical specification of an Electricity meter. Determined by the Available Supply Capacity and is confirmed at the time the meter is first registered (e.g. COP5, COP10)
COT – Change of Tenancy
COO – Change of Occupancy
COMA – Change of Managing Agent
The request made to the Energy Supplier to change the party responsible for paying energy invoices. This brings the previous contract to an end and a new contract can be negotiated
CV – Calorific ValuePart of the calculation to determine Gas consumption, based on the amount of heat generated from its combustion
DA/DC – Data Aggregator / Data CollectorThe company/s responsible for communicating the consumption data from a Meter to a Supplier
Daily MeteredA large usage Gas meter that has a data logger fitted to record, store and transmit daily readings and measurements
DNO – Distribution Network OperatorsRegional companies that deliver Gas and Electricity into our homes and businesses
DSR – Demand Side ResponseAn arrangement where payments are made to consumers to alter their energy consumption. This is at the request of National Grid
DUOS – Distribution Use of System ChargesCharges that are collected by the Supplier and returned to the DNO to cover Distribution costs
EAC – Estimated Annual ConsumptionThe estimated total usage for Electricity meters. Used for pricing energy contracts and billing
Energy Suppliers The company who provides energy contracts / billing / customer services etc.
Estimated Read A “best guess” Meter Read by the Supplier based on historical consumption patterns
Excess ASCThe amount of KVA used above your authorised level. Penalty charges apply
FiT – Feed in TariffA payment made to homes and businesses generating their own Electricity using small-scale renewables generation. The scheme closed in April 2019 and was essentially replaced by the Smart Export Guarantee
Fixed Costs Pre-determined charges that the Energy Supplier sets to cover costs for the duration of the contract
Fixed Price ContractThe majority or all costs are confirmed for the duration of the contract term on a given day. Rates do not change so it is great for budget certainty
Generators / Producers Provide the Gas and Electricity through the pipes and wires
GWh1,000,000 kWh
Green EnergyClean energy from sources that only emit little or no greenhouse gases and have a low environmental impact. E.g. solar or wind
HH MetersMeters where the consumption data is recorded every 30 minutes (Half Hourly = HH)
HHD – Half Hourly Data The kWh consumption of Electricity recorded in each Half Hour interval over a 24-hour period. Suppliers ideally need 12 months of HHD to provide an Electricity quote
InterconnectorsPhysical pipes and wires between the UK and Europe to transport Gas and Electricity
KVA – Kilovolt - ampereThe unit of energy used to measure the use of Available Capacity
kWh – Kilowatt HourThis is the unit of energy to measure consumption
LNG – Liquified Natural GasGas which is converted to a liquid in order for it to be easily sent on tankers around the world, unloaded and converted back into a Gas
LOA – Letter of Authority This is a signed permission slip which allows us to deal with your account on your behalf
LossesThe Electricity or Gas lost through by transportation through the Transmission and Distribution networks
MAM – Meter Asset ManagerThe company that owns and maintains the Gas meter
Maximum Demand The highest amount of KVA used by a meter at a single point in time
MOP – Meter OperatorThe company that owns and maintains the Electricity meter
MPAN – Meter Point Administration Number The industry’s reference for an Electricity meter’s location. Does not change when meters are changed. Not visible on the actual meter
MPR – Meter Point Reference The industry’s reference for a Gas meter’s location. Does not change when meters are changed. Not visible on the actual meter
MSN – Meter Serial Number The unique reference for each meter. Visible on the actual meter
MWh 1,000 kWh
National Grid Company responsible for transporting Gas and Electricity around the UK
NHH Meters A meter where the reading is manually recorded and sent to the Electricity Supplier
Non Daily MeteredThe traditional type of Gas meter where manual meter readings are required to be sent to the Gas Supplier
OFGEM – Office of Gas and Electricity Markets Government quango who manage all areas of the Energy Sector including the Retail Market, Wholesale Market, Transmission Network, Distribution Network, Legislation and Licensing
P/kWhThis is the unit cost that energy is priced on Electricity and Gas Contracts
Pass Through Charges Where the costs are not Fixed for the duration of the contract. Suppliers have the right to reconcile costs after they have been billed themselves by the relevant party (e.g. the DNO)
Power FactorThe efficiency of an electrical system by comparing the Real Power to the Apparent Power. Relevant for businesses using heating & cooling systems, pumps & fans and industrial machinery
Reactive Power ChargeAn additional charge by the Electricity Network in instances where there is inefficiency on site, resulting in wasted Electricity
Renewable Energy Energy generated from sustainable, non fossil fuel sources but potentially emit greenhouse gases. Can include solar and wind, but also include biomass and biodiesel
RO – Renewables ObligationA government scheme designed to encourage large-scale generation of Electricity from eligible renewable sources. Closed to new applicants in 2017 with payments to existing generators ceasing in 2037
Smart Export Guarantee Newly introduced scheme in 2020 which will require Electricity Suppliers to pay small-scale low-carbon Electricity generators for each kWh they generate
Smart Meters Meters that accurately record your usage and can communicate with a smart meter display to show you consumption and cost in real-time
SMETS1 Smart Meters installed before the purpose-built communication network was rolled-out. Service issues often recorded when moving from one Supplier to another
SMETS2 An improved Smart Meter that communicates with the communication network, which means the Smart functionality remains even if the Supplier changes
SOQ – Supply Offtake QuantityThe maximum daily consumption for a Daily Metered Gas supply
Standing Charge The daily charge you pay your supplier to cover some of their Fixed Costs
Sub MeteringMetering installed to monitor energy consumption, typically for energy management or to apportion costs. Sub Meters can be installed on specific pieces of equipment or specific electrical circuits within a building
Termination Notice An Energy Supplier’s stated period where formal notice should be served to end a contract arrangement. Typically, 30 to 90 days
Third Party Costs The additional charges that make up the delivered cost of energy, excluding the Wholesale Cost. Suppliers collect the charges from end users and pay them to the relevant party (e.g. the network operator)
TNUOS – Transmission Network Use of SystemCharges that are collected by the Supplier and returned to the Transmission System Operator to cover the Transmission costs
Transmission NetworkThe pipes and wires to move Gas and Electricity over long distances to the regional networks
TSO – Transmission System OperatorThe organisation responsible for moving Gas and Electricity around the national Transmission Network
TriadThe mechanism in place to pay for the Transmission network. It is calculated using the 3 peak points of consumption between November and February each year
Unidentified GasThis is Gas left in the system that cannot be linked to an end user. The cost of paying for this Gas is shouldered by every other Gas user
Volume ToleranceA contractual arrangement for the consumption allowed, below and above the contracted volume, often expressed as a %. Typically, 80%-120%
Wholesale Cost The cost of purchasing the Gas and Electricity on the traded commodity markets

In case the answer you are looking for isn’t here, we also have a list of ‘frequently asked questions’ on our website we hope you will find useful.

Our Core Values


How we do anything is how we do everything

Everyone’s experience of Indigo Swan should be the same – exceptional. This value is about delivering quality, thoughtful work every time, no matter how big or small the task is. Every piece of work will be given our full attention.



We’ve always been ambassadors for innovation and creativity, and it’s what sets us apart. Our Swans are intelligent, inventive and brave and we will always listen to ideas on how to make our company even better. We won’t be limited by what we currently know and do, and when seeking solutions to our challenges we’ll forget ‘what is’ and embrace ‘what if’.

Paper swan on water


We’re reversing the equation: happiness leads to success. We promote wellbeing and advocate positivity. We want to create an atmosphere where everybody can thrive. Kind gestures, excellent work and enthusiasm for doing good business won’t go unnoticed.



We recognise each Swan for their own amazing qualities and character, and acknowledge that this diversity contributes to our culture, which we cherish. As a company, we’re 100% independent from supplier-imposed targets, so we’ll never encourage our clients into making decisions that are anything less than what’s best for them.

You’re in safe hands