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EU Interconnector Targets

October 13, 2016
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By Paul Homewood 

 

h/t Joe Public

 

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https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2016/08/14/eu-targets-for-interconnector-capacity/

 

I noted a couple of months ago the fact that the EU had set targets for building of interconnector capacity.

Joe Public has done some digging and tracked down the Press Release from the European Commission last year, which introduced them.

 

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http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-15-4486_en.htm

 

These are the key points:

 

What is the ‘electricity interconnection target’?

The European Council of October 2014 called for all Member States to achieve interconnection of at least 10% of their installed electricity production capacity by 2020. This means that each Member State should have in place electricity cables that allow at least 10% of the electricity that is produced by their power plants to be transported across its borders to its neighbouring countries.

 

Why is it necessary that electricity grids of EU countries are connected with each other?

When power plant fails or during extreme weather conditions, Member States need to be able to rely on their neighbours for the importation of the electricity they need. Without infrastructure it is impossible to buy and sell electricity across borders. Therefore, connecting isolated electricity systems is essential for security of supply and help achieve a truly integrated EU-wide energy market which is a key enabler for the Energy Union.

Put simply with good connections between neighbours:

– electricity systems will be more reliable and there is a lower risk of black-outs

– we can save money by reducing the need to build new power stations

consumers will have more choice putting downward pressure on household bills

– electricity grids can better manage increasing levels of renewables, particularly variable renewables like wind and solar.

More renewables also means more jobs – in 2012 the renewable energy and technology firms in the EU employed around 1.2 million people.

 

How much money will be needed to reach the 10% interconnection target?

The European Commission estimates that up to 2020 about €40 billion will be needed to reach the 10% target across the EU.

 

 

As I suspected at the time, one of the drivers for the target was to enhance the EU’s objective of ever greater union. In their own words:

help achieve a truly integrated EU-wide energy market which is a key enabler for the Energy Union.

 

It is interesting to note as well that they need all of this to “better manage increasing levels of renewables”. Whether it makes the slightest difference when half of Europe has a week of no wind in winter is another matter.

 

But it will only cost a mere €40 billion, so who’s worrying? 

16 Comments leave one →
  1. BLACK PEARL permalink
    October 13, 2016 5:05 pm

    I guess smart meters with sim cards are all part of the plan also

  2. martinbrumby permalink
    October 13, 2016 5:16 pm

    Cost-benefit analysis?
    Are the 1.2 million jobs a benefit? I would have thought they were entirely a cost You might as well set on 1.2 million people to dig holes and backfill them again. At least we might have affordable & reliable electricity.

    • catweazle666 permalink
      October 14, 2016 12:01 am

      Exactly.

      Funny how the ‘unreliables’ enthusiasts seem to think the creation of 1.2 million more parasites sucking the public teat is some sort of a bonus.

    • Gamecock permalink
      October 14, 2016 3:24 pm

      ‘I would have thought they were entirely a cost’

      Indeed. What do ‘renewable energy and technology firms in the EU’ employees make? $40k a year? Times 1.2 million. That’s $48 BILLION a year.

  3. Joe Public permalink
    October 13, 2016 5:19 pm

    Why is it necessary that electricity grids …… are connected with each other?

    When power plant fails or during extreme weather conditions, …… to be able to rely on their neighbours for the importation of the electricity they need.

    ….. a lower risk of black-outs

    …… electricity grids can better manage increasing levels of renewables, particularly variable renewables like wind and solar.

    Applicable for South Australia too.

    • Graeme No.3 permalink
      October 13, 2016 9:18 pm

      So when the wind blows SA will have surplus electricity to sell at a loss into the well supplied Victorian market. When the wind doesn’t blow then SA can import electricity at a high price from Victoria because they have enough brown coal plants that the piddling bit for SA is just icing on the cake. What could go wrong?

      Well, Victoria could elect a Premier as stupid as SA has got, who wants to close those brown coal plants and put up lots of wind turbines. Since the same weather system affects both States then when the wind blows there will be lots of surplus electricity so those who, unlike Dopey Dan, understand the law of supply and demand know what will happen to the price. And when the wind doesn’t blow then all the interconnectors won’t have anything to carry, and the price, as Jay the Dill found out in July, goes through the roof.

      But no problem! It is only the public’s money.

  4. October 13, 2016 5:39 pm

    All part of the Wind Energy Death Spiral, deter replacement of proper power stations, to the point where everyone needs their backup electricity from countries that themselves are needing back-up power. Interconnectors are fine, as long as each country remains self-sufficient in dispatchable power.

  5. bushwalker permalink
    October 13, 2016 5:46 pm

    Rather than being an “unbinding 10% target” it should be a binding 10% upper limit. Otherwise you get the SA situation where an electrically small jurisdiction simply builds interconnectors like there’s no tomorrow, closes its fossil fuel plants and exports it emissions to a larger jurisdiction.

  6. Curious George permalink
    October 13, 2016 6:02 pm

    Mr. Juncker must be very proud of this achievement.

  7. October 13, 2016 7:42 pm

    It’s a mere €40 billion of other peoples’ money.

  8. October 13, 2016 7:59 pm

    Countries like Poland and the Czech republic are already having to defend themselves against overloads of excess wind (and solar) power from Germany.
    http://www.wind-watch.org/news/2012/10/26/windmills-overload-east-europes-grid-risking-blackout/

  9. Green Sand permalink
    October 13, 2016 11:41 pm

    Hi Paul, sorry for OT but the following has merit. Probably already been picked up, but the more…

    ‘Revoke the BBC’s charter’

    https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/159140

  10. dennisambler permalink
    October 14, 2016 10:28 am

    More pigeons coming home to roost, (if they avoid the turbines):

    http://joannenova.com.au/2016/10/ontarios-electricity-carnage-a-train-wreck-electricity-costs-double-to-reduce-carbon-at-250ton/

    “Ontario’s Society of Professional Engineers has issued many reports describing how dismal the green policies are, but the Premier’s office appear to have been fooled completely by the Green machine.

    A former head of the OSPE, Paul Acchione, says “because they know how to turn a light bulb on and off, they’ll issue policy statements on the most complex engineering system on the planet”. He said the Premier’s office was pretty much running the grid and “hiring political scientists and environmentalists because they thought they were the experts””

  11. tom0mason permalink
    October 14, 2016 10:32 am

    Please forgive me but I have made this point before.
    I compare supplying power to having a well trained choir with a capable conductor. Basses, tenors, and sopranos all singing in unison creating tuneful harmony.
    Now we have a bar room of noisy crooners joining in, adding at random intervals what each of the considers their best performance. Yes the volume has gone up but the harmony, the synchronicity, of the whole performance has been diminished to noisy tunelessness.

    This is similar to the old days of power generation where a few large generators were backed up by medium sized plants and smaller generators came into play when the demand required it. All was kept in concert by the CEGB, strictly maintaining the supply to the customer demand.
    These days the ‘choir’ of generators has the babble of unreliable ‘renewables’ added to it regardless of the customer demand. This added noise is expensive and too often threatens to overwhelm the grid system.
    These plans, or more correctly experiments, of the mad European bureaucrat should be thrown out, and the UK return to solid engineering principles and harmony on the grid.

    • October 14, 2016 12:01 pm

      Re ‘too often threatens to overwhelm the grid system’ – even more often it threatens to, or does, underwhelm the grid system.

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