Grid proving resilient amid growing winter season pressure

The country’s grid has so far managed to cope with the gradual decline in temperatures around the country and subsequent rise in electricity demand, the lack of major pressure on wholesale prices has indicated.

Over the past week, wholesale electricity prices have ranged between 40 and 63 euros per MWh with demand levels reaching 7,000 to 7,900 MW, data concerning the day-ahead market, the main arena for trading power, has shown.

The additional contribution to the grid that has resulted from the return of one of two main power utility PPC units at the Agios Dimitrios power station, which were temporarily sidelined for revamp work, has proven crucial to the price stability achieved.

At present Agios Dimitrios 1, III, IV and V are operating but Agios Dimitrios II, one of the facility’s two units that had been withdrawn for the revamp, remains sidelined.

Also, PPC’s two Amynteo and two Kardia units are feeding the grid for many hours per day.

Just days ago, PPC’s chief executive Manolis Panagiotakis, speaking at the American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Greek Economy Conference”, warned that the grid’s current need for heightened contributions from the Amynteo and Kardia lignite-fired units is burning up their remaining lifespan hours, which increases the urgency of a request submitted by the utility to the European Commission for lifespan extension of both. Otherwise, the grid will face serious equilibrium issues within the next few years, the PPC boss stressed.

As for the independent electricity producers, all but one of their units are fully available at present. A Heron unit contributed for just one day over the past week. Hydropower production has been greater on certain days, but has used up existing water reserves. RES production has produced at its usual mild rate. Electricity imports have also been subdued.