Grid passes summer’s first test, demand at 7,600 MW today

The country’s grid is set to face increased pressure as temperatures rise throughout the country and are forecast to reach as high as 39 degrees Celsius today. Electricity demand is expected to rise to 7,600 MW.

The country’s grid coped well during yesterday’s first major test for the summer. Electricity demand reached 7,300 MW amid temperatures marginally lower than the levels forecast for today.

The power utility PPC was forced to use its hydropower facilities. Water deposit levels have been extremely low this year. Further usage of the hydropower facilities will be needed today but PPC is expected to act cautiously as it awaits tougher days ahead.

PPC anticipates it may need to use 50 to 60 percent of its 3,171-MW total hydropower capacity in July.

The heat-related rise in electricity demand has coincided with increased wholesale electricity prices over the past week. They rose sharply from 28.62 euros per MWh on June 28 to 44.52 euros per MWh on Tuesday and 45.01 euros per MWh yesterday.

This first summer test for the grid has once again highlighted the extremely high costs entailed in operating lignite-fired power stations. Their generation costs are now between 90 and 100 euros per MWh.

During this heatwave, PPC, currently moving to withdraw most of its lignite units over the next three years, has opted to minimize its reliance on lignite, preferring instead to cover its generation needs through its natural gas units and hydropower stations.

 

 

 

PPC turns to hydropower facilities as temperatures rise

Power utility PPC has turned to its hydropower facilities to meet heightened electricity demand anticipated over the next few days as a result of hot temperatures in many parts of the country.

PPC plans to use hydropower stations during the peak-demand hours of 11am-3pm and 8pm-10-pm, but the input of these facilities is expected to be contained. Water deposit levels have been extremely low this year.

PPC’s hydropower stations, 15 in total, offer a capacity of 3,171 MW.

Temperatures are forecast to reach as high as 38 degrees Celsius in some parts of Greece. These weather conditions will force PPC to resort to its hydropower units.

The power utility may need to provide between 50 and 60 percent of its total hydropower capacity over the next few days.

Hydropower generation was down 24 percent in the first five-month period this year, compared to the equivalent period last year, according to power grid operator IPTO’s monthly report.

Hydropower generation reached 995 GWh between January and May compared to 1,308 GWh during the equivalent period in 2019.

Hydropower facility contributions to the country’s overall generation represented just 6 percent of the total in January, 4 percent in February, 6 percent in March, 7 percent in April and 9 percent in May.

No signs of market pressure despite European heatwave

Despite soaring temperatures in central Europe, expected to exceed 40 degrees Celsius in France and Germany, electricity markets have been spared of excessive pressure, as highlighted by day-ahead market price reductions prompted by strong wind forecasts, meaning that part of the additional electricity demand will be covered by wind energy generation.

In Germany yesterday, over-the-counter electricity prices fell by 5.25 percent to 37.9 euros per MWh, while in France, price levels of agreements for delivery today fell by 4.5 percent to 31.5 euros per MWh.

In France, peak-hour demand is expected to increase by 1.6 GW to 51.5 GW, while, in Germany, demand is seen remaining steady at 63.4 GW.

These trends can be partially attributed to wind energy production rises in both countries.

Likewise, day-ahead market data for Greece, where temperatures are forecast to drop, has shown no signs of pressure. Today’s demand level of 156,365 MWh is expected to be easily met by thermal production and the RES sector. The Greek system has programmed to export 22,768 MWh.

Grid prepared for demand peak of first heatwave this summer

Given the day-ahead market’s indications, the country’s first heatwave of this summer, expected to increase temperatures to levels of between 37 and 38 degrees Celsius today and tomorrow, should not cause any problems for the grid.

The system is prepared for daily demand levels of 150,760 MWh at a System Marginal Price (SMP), or wholesale price, of 73.549 euros per MWh.

Renewable energy is programmed to cover 21,584 MWh of daily demand and hydropower facilities a further 8,156 MWh.

As for the country’s lignite-fired power stations, power utility PPC’s Kardia II, III and IV, Agios Dimitrios III and IV and Megalopoli III and IV will all be called into action.

So, too, will gas-fueled power stations operated by PPC and private-sector electricity producers (Aliveri V, Lavrio IV and V, Megalopoli V, Heron, ENTHES, Protergia, Corinth Power).

Electricity exports totaling 21,350 MWh have also been planned. Demand is forecast to peak at 2pm, reaching a level of 7,622 MW.

In a statement released yesterday, Greek gas utility DEPA ascertained the country’s gas needs will be covered this summer, as will supply needs for customers in Greece and Bulgaria.

Total gas demand in Greece last year between June 15 and August 15 reached 8.1 TWh and is expected to rise to 9.2 TWh for the equivalent period this summer, according to DEPA.

Gas grid operator DESFA’s incoming LNG shipments for this period this summer will amount to 7.3 TWh, dramatically up from a 2.4 TWh total unloaded at the Revythoussa terminal on the islet off Athens during the summer period last year, according to the operator.