Germany Exported More Power Than Ever Despite Nuclear Phaseout

Germany ships more power abroad despite nuke exit (AP, Nov 9, 2012):

BERLIN (AP) Utility companies say Germany has exported significantly more electricity to its neighbors from January through September as renewable energies made up for last year’s closure of eight nuclear power plants.

The BDEW industry group said Friday net electricity outflow leapt to 14,600 gigawatt hours from 1,600 during the first nine months of 2011. The output from wind and especially solar power, however, is expected to be much lower in the dark months of the fourth quarter.

The group says the figures represent physical net energy flows between Germany and its neighbors and don’t necessarily equal the amount of power sold abroad.

Germany has long been a net exporter of electricity, but output fell last year after the government shut down old nuclear reactors after Japan’s atomic disaster in March.

German article:

Trotz Atomausstieg: Deutschland exportiert so viel Strom wie nie (Spiegel, Nov 9, 2012)

Tranlation by ‘nuclear-news’:

Germany exported more power than ever despite nuclear phaseout:

Hamburg – Germany has so far this year exported as much electricity in neighboring countries like never before. This is clear from the preliminary figures from the Federation of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) present manager magazine online.

In the first three quarters of 2012 in the balance of 12.3 terawatt hours of electricity flowed across the borders. This corresponds to the output of two large power plants that supply electricity continuously during this time.

In the same period of the previous year was Germany Federal Statistics Office net importer of electricity. The deficit amounted to 0.2 TWh. In the year before the nuclear phase (2010), the export surplus from January to September inclusive, therefore, at 8.8 TWh.

Professionals make the rapid expansion of renewable energies in Germany responsible for the development. Large amounts of wind and solar power dampen the price at the power exchange. ”The decline in prices lead to more electricity from Germany is exported to neighboring countries,” Energy market analyst Brian Potskowski says the industry information service Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

No all-clear for the winter

Are particularly dramatic for BDEW last detail, exports grew in the Netherlands. There utilities go to estimate the association often shut their gas-fired plants because electricity imported from Germany is cheaper. This development confirmed the utility RWE  against manager magazine online. RWE operates power plants in both countries.

“We see an increasingly closer relationship between European markets”, said a spokesman for RWE. This was particularly true for France, the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. ”The power plants of the countries competing with each other, and electricity is produced in power stations, which have made the best offer.” And are increasingly wind and solar power plants, but also coal-fired power plants that produce electricity cheaper than gas-fired plants.

BDEW leads to the great German power plants as a key reason for the export glut. ”German power plant operators have to maintain sufficient capacity for safety reasons,” said a spokesman for the BDEW.

Systems designed to ensure in-phase with high consumption security of supply produced, depending on the market, even in times of lower demand electricity, which is then exported if necessary. ”This is a known phenomenon for many years,” the spokesman said.

The high trade surplus does not clear for possible power shortages in winter . On particularly cold days when the sun is not even the wind blows, Germany is dependent, according to the Agency on a so-called cold reserve. At that include power plants in Austria.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.