Explanatory Memorandum

Energy Act (Northern Ireland) 2011

2011 CHAPTER 6

10 February 2011

Background and Policy Objectives

Extension of existing powers of entry into premises for gas companies

At present, the Gas Order provides a mechanism for gas companies to enter premises in certain circumstances.  Such powers are specifically limited to situations concerning entry where there may be a danger to life or property (such as a gas leak).   The equivalent regime in electricity goes further, by enabling electricity companies to legally enter customers' premises in situations that are not conditional on there being a danger to life or property (for example, where they wish to take a meter reading or where suspect that a customer has been tampering with an electricity meter).   The Act therefore extends the gas companies’ existing powers of entry so that they broadly align with the powers available to electricity companies.