Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Germany to keep Gas-fired power plants open by paying the fixed costs

As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, in Electricity Sector Lessons from Ontario and Germany, Germany has now started the next round of increases in electricity pricing by moving to pay the fixed costs at 2 modern natural gas generators slated for closure by their owners due to an electricity system that made their profitability as merchant plants unlikely.

Irsching 4 and 5 Operators Agree with Tennet and BNetzA Not to Close Down Plants for Grid Security Reasons « German Energy Blog:

The operators of the Irsching 4 and 5 agreed with Tennet TSO GmbH not to close down the highly efficient but presently unprofitable gas-fired power plant units near Ingolstadt within the next three years. The units were needed to secure grid stability and the security of supply, and would continue to be operated to allow Tennet to resort to so-called redispatch measures if necessary, Tennet said. E.ON will receive the fixed costs for the power ...

The Irsching 4 and 5 are modern highly efficient combined cycle power plants. With a capacity of 569 MW, unit 4 (Ulrich Hartmann unit) reaches 60.4% efficiency, the highest efficiency worldwide. Unit 5 with a gross output of 860 MW reaches an efficiency of 59.7%. Yet it was not possible to operate the plants profitably in the recent past, as the growing renewable power plant output in Germany has to be purchased and transmitted with priority by the grid operators ...

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