Windreich AG and Tennet TSO GmbH Agree on Interim Grid Connection of Offshore Wind Farm Deutsche Bucht

British Wind Energy GmbH, a subsidiary of the offshore developer Windreich AG, and the transmission operator TenneT TSO GmbH have agreed on a temporary grid connection of British Wind Energy GmbH’s offshore wind farm project Deutsche Bucht and an end to a lawsuit brought by Windreich/British Wind against Tennet.

Originally the Deutsche Bucht wind farm was supposed to be connected to the BorWin4 grid connection for a cluster of wind farms Tennet, the responsible transmission operator, intends to set up. However, the Borwin4 project is still in the tender phase. Hence Windreich/British Energy and Tennet agreed to temporarily connect Deutsche Bucht to the 800 MW Borwin2 grid connection, which is under construction. The offshore wind farms Veja Mate and Windreich’s 400 MW-Park Global Tech I wind park project will also be connected to Borwin2 and have priority. After completion of the Borwin4 grid connection, Deutsche Bucht shall be connected with its full capacity to Borwin4, Windreich announced.

The agreement settles a lawsuit brought by Windreich/British Energy.

Lately Trianel GmbH, a joint venture of municipal and regional utilitities, announced that it brought legal action against Tennet TSO GmbH because of delays concerning the connection of the offshore wind park Borkum allegedly caused by Tennet.

In November 2011, Tennet had informed the Chancellery and the competent ministries of difficulties with the offshore grid connection in its transmission system control area (Regelzone) that includes the North Sea. In July the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) informed that it submitted the first draft decisions concerning the certification of electricity and gas transmission system operators (TSOs) to the European Commission. Tennet TSO GmbH was considered not to meet the certification criteria. TenneT had not submitted the necessary proof about the financial means needed to fulfill its legal obligations to operate and extend the transmission grid, BNetzA argued. According to Tennet, the Commission replied that the provisions laid down in Directive 2009/72/EC regarding the unbundling of transmission system operators and their certification did not justify a denial of certification because Tennet did not prove it had sufficient means to perform its obligations under the German Energy Act (EnWG), which included processing the applications for offshore grid connections.

Currently legislative efforts for a new offshore liability regime are under way, according to which TSOs shall be entitled to pass on compensation payments for for grid connection delays and disruptions of power lines to consumers within certain limits and under certain conditions. This shall help TSOs to shoulder the burden of offshore grid connections and find investors, thus accelerating grid connection.

Source: Windreich AG

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