Renewables and imports disturb energy balance, others have to pay the price

Three factors significantly affect the balance of Ukraine’s energy system: an active development of renewable energy, electricity imports, and an independent planning of operating modes by market participants. Other types of generation have to pay the price for it.

This was announced at the panel discussion “A Long-Term Balance of Electricity Capacities Formation” by Roman Hrabchak, a representative of NPC Ukrenergo, Kosatka.Media reports.

“We have a need for regulatory capacities, and the further, the more acute the problem is in ensuring balance”, he said.

The expert explained: electricity imports after the start of the new market has increased significantly. And its schedule does not coincide with the needs of consumers. This requires an additional load on the regulatory power. It is necessary to regulate not only the consumption drop, but the imports growth as well.   

In addition, participants in the new market completely independently plan their work modes. And this experience is not enough for a reliable balance.

Hrabchak said that over the past 2 years, an extra-large number of renewable energy facilities have been launched – almost 500. This is not bad. The bad thing is that Ukrenergo cannot manage them as required by the balance and the energy system. Only 5 objects have an installed capacity of more than 100 MW. The rest is 60 MW and below. It is needed to get along with them somehow. And it’s very difficult for the dispatcher to separately manage each small producer (of 1, 2, 5, 10 MW).

“Our system is powerful, and this amount of renewable energy is only 6% of it. But even such an insignificant share causes unbalances and disturbances in the energy system, which we must solve. Example: two adjacent days of October. The difference is almost 1300 MW. To compensate, it is necessary to immediately suspend 6 blocks of a thermal power plant of 200 MW each”, Hrabchak explained.

According to him, hydropower is also involved in regulating the balance. “To ensure balance, we are forced to launch nuclear power plants in a pump mode. In October, it was 10 times. Insufficient regulation capacity also forces us to redistribute HPP loads relative to their commercial schedule. This is Ukrhidroenergo’s pain, which we, as dispatchers, are forced to push on them”, said the representative of Ukrenergo.

To remedy the situation, Ukrenergo is introducing a new system of electricity consumption and a renewable energy forecasting system.

Tags: renewable energy, electricity, Ukrenergo, electricity market, import

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