Federal Network Agency Publishes EEG Feed-in Management Guideline

The Federal Network Agency has published a guideline covering feed-in management pursuant to the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG).

The guideline clarifies in which order network operators are entitled take technical control over installations connected to their grid to avoid grid congestion. It also regulates compensation payments and the conditions under which the grid operator may add costs pertaining to the aforementioned measures to his grid charges.

Notwithstanding their (general) obligation in accordance with Section 9 EEG, grid operators are entitled under Section 11 EEG, by way of exception, to take technical control over installations connected to their grid system with a capacity of over 100 KW for the generation of electricity from renew­able energy sources, combined heat and power generation or mine gas, if

  1. the grid capacity in the respective grid area would otherwise be overloaded on account of that electricity,
  2. they have ensured that the largest possible quantity of electricity from renewable energy sources and from combined heat and power generation is being purchased, and
  3. they have called up the data on the current feed-in situation in the relevant region of the grid system.

Chapter 1 of the guidelines deals with the different rules in the EEG and the German Energy Act (EnWG) that allow network operators to manage renewable energy fed into their grid. This covers in particular Section 11 EEG., Section 8 para 3 EEG, and Section 13 paras 1 and 2 EnWG.

According to Section 8 para 3 EEG, grid and installation operators can contractually agree to deviate from the priority purchase of energy under the EEG in order to better integrate the respective installation into the grid system. Section 13 paras 1 and 2 German Energy Act (EnWG) entitles transmission system operators to take measures to guarantee system stability.

Chapter 2 provides advice with regard to compensation payments for onshore and offshore wind power installations.

The grid system operator whose grid system gives rise to the need for the assumption of technical control under Section 11 EEG shall in principle compensate those installation operators who, because of feed-in management measures, were not able to feed in electricity to the extent agreed upon. Where no agreement has been reached, the lost tariffs and revenues from the use of heat less the expenses saved shall be paid. Details of compensation payments have been disputed in the past, and the new guideline tries to provide a more detailed framework for future compensation payments.

Chapter 3 deals with the conditions under which costs for compensation payments can be passed on as part of the grid fees.

In principle, the grid system operator may pass on such costs, provided the measure was necessary and he bears no responsibility for it. The grid system operator shall, in particular, bear responsibility if he did not exhaust all the options for optimising, boosting and expanding the grid system (Section 12 EEG). The requirements for adding the above costs to the grid charges as well as the necessary documentation are set out in Chapter 3 of the guideline.

The Federal Network Agency’s president Matthias Kurth emphasised that the German grids needed to be expanded and optimised speedily so as to leave taking control of installations by the grid operator an exception.

Source: Federal Network Agency

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