Information about the transmission capacities for export offered by PSE-Operator S.A.

11 March 2008, 00:00

Information about the transmission capacities for export offered by PSE-Operator S.A.
PSE-Operator acting as a Transmission System Operator in Poland (TSO) is responsible for providing safe operation of Polish Power System (PPS). Efficient performance of this duty requires, during the process of decision making related to available to market participants levels of export transmission capacities, to take also into consideration, in parallel to the conditions of operations of the grid, the projected balance of domestic generating capacities and in particular projected level of power reserves available for TSO.

Large curtailments, in recent period, of the transmission capacities for export offered by PSE-Operator S.A. results from difficult balancing situation in PPS (generating power deficit). That is directly related to remaining, for some period of time, large level of, reported by producers, unavailability of centrally dispatched generating units (around 2000 MW above the level recorded last year). The generators justify the causes of unavailability with (among others) difficulties in acquisition of demanded amount and quality of coal as well as ecological factors (exceed of the limits of greenhouse gases emissions).
Power reserves available for TSO remained on very low level during January and February this year and for several working days were considerably beyond the levels required.

The long-lasting nature of reported causes of unavailability of generating units indicates high probability that those factors will influence the level of power reserves available for TSO also in subsequent months of the year.

Delivered by generators schedules of planned overhauls of generating units and the scope of the essential maintenance works to be conducted in the transmission grid (effecting in periodical limitations of power plant’s capacities) unambiguously indicates possibility of maintaining difficult balancing situation in the PPS for whole year.

In cases when the situation in PPS appeared better that earlier projected, PSE-Operator have made available appropriate level of export transmission capacities for daily auctions. For this time horizon (day ahead) there is lower uncertainty related to decisions of producers dictated by above causes. At present we’re dealing with this situation – during the first days of March, PSE-Operator was making available, during the daily auctions, the transmission capacities for export direction on the comparable level to the levels of transmission capacities available during the monthly auctions in January and February (during those months capacities for daily auctions weren’t available).

For years, the transmission capacities available for market participants for import direction are going for around the level close to zero for technical profiles (transmission capacities are evaluated for technical profile UCTE – Poland, not for individual countries). The basic reason for such a situation are appearing in the Central Europe region ‘loop flows’, which amount is growing, by the year, in proportion to the growth of capacities of wind farms established in northern part of UCTE system. With actual state of PPS configuration those flows can fill up entire PPS transmission capacities for import direction, making it unavailable for market participants. The amount of the loop flows affecting PPS is hard to estimate ahead of time of more than 24 hours, since it is dependent, not only, on the amount of the wind generation in northern part of UCTE but also from the characteristics of generation practically in whole UCTE area, excluding Iberian Peninsula. For this reason PSE-Operator can not make available the transmission capacities during the daily auctions since it can not assure the physical deliveries of appropriate trade contracts.