German grid regulator to take into account company saving efforts in case of gas rationing
Clean Energy Wire
In preparation for a possible – if unlikely – severe shortage of natural gas supply during winter, the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) has decided it will take into account companies’ past savings efforts when rationing the scarce supply. Should the government declare the emergency level in case of a severe disruption of supply, the BNetzA becomes the national supply coordinator (Bundeslastverteiler) responsible for allocating gas in close coordination with the network operators. In case it has to oversee the rationing of available supplies, BNetzA said there was no fixed shutdown sequence for gas consumers. It argued that decisions in the event of a shortage will be made on a case-by-case basis because the circumstances depend on many variables. However, it has now established some general rules on taking into account saving efforts when rationing. For example, should the agency decide a 20-percent supply reduction, and a given company already reduced consumption by 15 percent in the preceding months, then its supply would be cut only by another 5 percent.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ensuing energy crisis have brought persisting uncertainty to Germany’s energy supply security. To combat possible gas shortages, the government has ensured storage levels are full ahead of winter and called on businesses and citizens to reduce consumption. Not least due to mild temperatures in autumn, BNetzA and storage operator association INES said a severe gas shortage this winter is very unlikely.