National Grid

InfluenceMap Score
C
Performance Band
67%
Organisation Score
57%
Relationship Score
Sector:
Utilities
Head​quarters:
London, United Kingdom
Brands and Associated Companies:
National Grid USA, Niagara Mohawk Power , KeySpan, New England Power Company
Official Web Site:

Climate Lobbying Overview: National Grid appears to be actively engaging on climate change with mixed positions, particularly in advocacy on specific climate policy and the energy transition. The company appears to be supportive of the UK government’s Ten Point Plan for a green industrial revolution and its 2050 net-zero target.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: National Grid’s top-line messaging on climate policy appears to be positive. In its 2020-21 Annual Report, National Grid stated support for the UK’s 2050 net-zero emissions target. In June 2022, the Brooklyn Paper reported that National Grid appeared on an expert panel at the 2022 Brooklyn Energy Summit, which included a discussion on the U.S. Build Back Better Act, without describing the utility's position on the legislation's climate provisions. National Grid has also engaged in state-level climate policy in the U.S., supporting Rhode Island’s House Bill 5445, which set a mandate to decarbonize the state economy by 2050, in comments to the Rhode Island House Committee on Environment and Natural Resources in February 2021. National Grid appears to support the need for climate change regulation, both on its website in 2021 and co-signing the Energy Transitions Commission Covid-19 recovery response letter in 2020, which advocated for the UK government to maintain carbon pricing measures. The company supported the US’ re-entry to the Paris Agreement in its 2020-21 Annual Report. National Grid stated support for the UK government’s decarbonization ‘Ten Point Plan’ in December 2020 on its corporate website.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: National Grid appears to be generally positively engaged on climate-related regulations, with some exceptions. In its 2020 CDP Climate Change Disclosure, the company showed broad support for emissions trading schemes. However, the organization did not seem to support the EU’s Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), stating in its response to the October 2020 EU public consultation that the measure would create an administrative burden and uneven playing field for trade. National Grid stated support on social media in October 2020 for renewable energy legislation in the form of Contracts for Difference, to increase the UK’s offshore wind capacity. In its 2020-21 Annual Report, National Grid Chairman, Sir Peter Gershon, stated support for the UK’s 2035 78% GHG emission reduction target. In its 2021 CDP Climate Change disclosure, National Grid supported the EU’s 2030 GHG emission reduction target.

In the U.S., National Grid signed a January 2022 joint letter organized by the American Clean Power Association that advocated to Congressional leadership to pass the clean energy tax credits in the Build Back Better Act. On the state level, the company supported Rhode Island’s climate bill, which mandates GHG emissions reduction targets of 45% by 2030 and 80% by 2040. as reported by Energy News in March 2021. National Grid USA, a company subsidiary, took legal action by advocating to the Supreme Court to uphold the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate GHG emissions, according to a legislative document to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in January 2022. However, the company emphasized flexibility and a preference for market-driven, emissions trading approaches to emissions reductions.

However, through lobbyists hired by National Grid, the company has consistently opposed “An Act Creating a Next Generation Roadmap for Massachusetts Climate Policy”, the state’s key climate legislation in January and February 2021. The omnibus bill, which contained provisions for a 2050 net zero target, intermediate GHG emission reduction targets of at least 50% by 2030 and 75% by 2040, and measures to support energy efficiency, renewable energy development, and to transition the energy mix and infrastructure across sectors, was opposed by National Grid when it was initially put forward as Senate Bill 2995 and Senate Bill 9. The company then supported proposed amendments to reduce the intermediate emissions targets to 45% by 2030 and 65% by 2040. After these amendments were not approved and the targets remained the same, the company opposed the bill in its final reading as Senate Bill 30.

Positioning on Energy Transition: National Grid’s support for the transition of the energy mix appears to be mixed. The company appeared to support the continued use of unabated fossil gas in the energy mix, according to reports from a Forbes article in May 2021. However, in February 2021 on social media, the company appeared to support transitioning away from fossil gas to hydrogen in the heating, cooking and industrial sectors, without specifying its position on the decarbonization of hydrogen.

National Grid signed a COP26 Declaration on Accelerating the Transition to 100% Zero Emission Cars and Vans in November 2021, that called for decarbonizing the transport sector and signalled a commitment to phase out ICE-powered vehicles in leading markets by 2035 and globally by 2040. The company was also a part of the ‘We Mean Business Coalition’ in September 2021 joint letter that advocated for global policymakers to commit to ending new coal power developments and financing, which included a plan to “phase out coal-fired power generation by 2030 for advanced economies, and 2040 for other countries”.

Industry Association Governance: National Grid has publicly disclosed a list of some of its industry association memberships. However, it does not comment on their climate-related lobbying activities or positions, nor has it published a full review of its alignment with industry associations. The company is a member and sits on the Energy and Climate Change Board of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), an association that is broadly positively engaged on climate change policy. However, the company also retains membership to Edison Electric Institute, and the American Gas Association, trade associations with mixed and negative positions on climate policy.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
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Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
72%
 
72%
 
55%
 
55%
 
29%
 
29%
 
57%
 
57%
 
41%
 
41%
 
75%
 
75%
 
57%
 
57%
 
59%
 
59%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.