Federal Network Agency Updates Information on Power Plant Capacity and Planned Plant Closures

An updated list by the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) shows that total power plant capacity amounted to 192.3 GW on 16 July 2014. According to an update of BNetzA’s list of planned power plant closures, 7,900 MW had been officially notified for closure on 23 July 2014. In addition to the formal notifications, BNetzA has information on plans for further plant closures. According to Rheinische Post (RP), BNetzA knows of planned shutdowns of power plants with a total capacity of 13 GW. BNetzA information dating 18 July 2014 speak of 11,521 MW.

1. Power Plant Capacity

The update on German power plant capacity comprises power plants with a net capacity of at least 10 MW and also contains power plants from Luxemburg, France, Switzerland and Austria, which feed into the German grid. Besides, the list includes power plants with a capacity smaller than 10 MW eligible for financial support pursuant to the Renewable Energy Source Act (EEG). Power plants with a capacity smaller than 10 MW that do not receive support under the EEG are summed up by renewable energy sources.

On 16 July 2014 the power plant list contained plants with a net capacity of 192.3 GW (without final shutdowns), including 85.0 GW renewable power plants, 80.4 GW of which were eligible for support under the EEG (2013: 175.3 GW, including 75.5 GW renewables, 71.5 GW of which were eligible for support under the EEG).

Final shutdowns of generation plants since 31 December 2011 are also included in BNetzA’s list to allow a better analysis of the developments in the generation sector in future. They amounted to 3.8 GW on 16 July 2014.

2. Power Plant New Build and Closures

As part of its monitoring duties, BNetzA also collects data on the prospective construction and decommissioning of power plants with a net nominal capacity of at least 10 MW. Due to their particular importance for the security of supply, the agency publishes key data for non-volatile power plants under construction, along with the expected decommissioning of non-volatile plants until 2018. Non-volatile refers to all sources of energy with the exception of hydro electric and high-pressure storage power plants as well as photovoltaic and wind power plants (Lauf- und Speicherwasser, Photovoltaik und Wind).

According to BNetzA information dating 18 July 2014, nationwide 6,558 MW non-volatile power plant capacity is under construction and will be completed presumably by 2016 (with 1,108  MW being constructed in Southern Germany that is particularly affected by the nuclear shutdowns). BNetzA specifically pointed out that the date of commissioning of E.ON’s planned 1,100 MW Datteln 4 power plant was uncertain. On the other hand operators planned to close down 11,251 MW (6,825 MW in Southern Germany) by 2018, BNetzA said on 18 July 2014.

On 23 July 2014 operators had only formally notified BNetzA of the closure of 7.900 MW (4,537 MW in Southern Germany) in accordance with Section 13a EnWG (German Energy Act). As BNetzA points out such notifications are a prerequisite for closures. Another one is a waiting period of generally 12 months.

Provided that formal notifications of closures for the other plants were submitted, this could result in in a negative balance of -4,692 MW for the whole country by the end of 2018 and a negative balance of -5,717 MW for Southern Germany, BNetzA said on 18 July 20014. Yet plants with a capacity of 992 MW had been declared system-relevant in the sense of Section 13a EnWG, with the effect that they will not be decommissioned for the time being, BNetzA added.

Source: Federal Network Agency, List of Notifications of Closure of Power Plants Pursuant to Section 13a EnWG; Federal Network Agency, Power Plant List; RP-Online

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