French Baseload import capacity price fixed higher than exports for July
The price of Baseload transport capacity to flow power into France from its neighbouring markets in July turned out to be more expensive than the cost of export capacity, according to the latest monthly auction results published by French grid operator RTE on Monday.
Six companies secured capacity to import power from Germany into RTE’s grid for the price of €3.49/MWh, the French grid operator said. A total of 450MW of capacity was offered to the market.
In the opposite direction, seven players obtained capacity at a lower price of €0.57/MWh. A total of 325MW was made available through the auction.
Cross-border capacity in the Belgium-to-France direction was auctioned at €2.71/MWh with 100MW on offer. Four players successfully obtained capacity. In the opposite direction, from France to Belgium, three participants obtained the 125MW on offer at a discounted price of €0.17/MWh.
RTE issued a revised forecast earlier this week that sliced more than 5,500MW off the balance of exchanges under normal circumstances. Back in April, RTE predicted more than 5,000MW would be available to export during Week 29, but delayed nuclear maintenance has pulled that figure down to leave France importing around 500MW in that worst affected week.
In the event of a heat wave of up to 7°C above average, the need for imports leaps from less than 3,000MW as forecast in April, up to 8,000MW for Week 29 (see EDEM 22 June 2009).
French grid operator RTE may need as much as 8,000MW of imports to balance its grid in the event of a heat wave. But the maximum transmission capacity available is only 8,570MW during working-day Peak hours. This leaves France highly vulnerable as it will be relying on this maximum capacity being available during a heat wave, despite the same power also likely to be needed by neighbouring countries.
According to the European Transmission System Operators’ website, French import capacity for the summer is 1,400MW from Switzerland, 1,100MW from Belgium, 2,700MW from Germany, 870MW from Italy and 500MW from Spain — a total of 6,570MW. CR
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