National Grid Electricity System Operator
National Grid TO Innovation Team
Click here to send a question to the contact.
Traditionally, investment decisions have been made on the basis of capital
costs of equipment only. This approach has been accepted since the capital
costs for electricity transmission assets are large compared to annual operating
costs and, being incurred up-front, are dominant in the discounted cash flow.
However, it is becoming increasingly important that the whole life cycle be
considered when evaluating options, including costs of obtaining raw materials,
manufacturing, maintenance, losses and decommissioning/disposal of
The use of more holistic Life Cycle Costing (LCC) methods are an imperative for
companies based on capital intensive assets having long asset lifetimes where
the true current and future costs of ownership and operation are to be critically
assessed with investment decision criteria that are searching and meaningful.
Although the importance of this approach is recognised, its complexity and a
lack of meaningful data and appropriate techniques have hindered its
While health and safety risk assessment is a well established discipline, very
little has been done on life cycle assessment of human hazards and risks from
plant manufacture, to scheme construction and commissioning, to operation
and maintenance through to end of life management. There are significant
potential benefits to being able to carry out such assessments in order to
quantify the most effective ways to reduce hazards and risks and how to
assess the effort and cost required to achieve safety by design for both new
and current schemes.