FNN-Hinweise zum Krisenmanagement und Risikomanagement liefern Netzbetreibern Unterstützung zur effizienten Vorbereitung.
2020-03-31

Information to help keeping the lights on during a pandemic

This site provides you with up-to-date international news as well as answers to the most frequently asked questions on how to deal with a pandemic in network operation. Information provided on this site is non-exhaustive.

FAQ providing Information for the German power industry are available here.

Shortly before the spread of the virus COVID19, VDE FNN had already initiated the revision of the Crisis Management Guidelines and an update of the Resource Register. The experience gained from the measures deployed by different actors in the power industry will of course be incorporated into these documents.

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Florian Regnery

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Impact on the European Power Sector from Eurelectric

COVID19 impact in Australia

Policy and Regulatory Best Practices in ICT (International)

Utilities that have and have not suspended disconnects amid COVID-19 (US)

The Energy and Policy Institute (EPI) in the US is collecting data about which utilities are suspending disconnections as well as public institutions requesting also requesting these suspensions in the US. Energy providers around the world but also within countries, as in the US, have different approaches to the crisis. 

https://www.energyandpolicy.org/utilities-disconnect-coronavirus/ 

Coronavirus and Your National Grid Service: What to Know (US)

Covid-19 live timeline from power-technology.com (International)

UK regulator Ofgem on COVID-19 (UK)

COVID-19 Wind Power Updates

Utility Crisis Management Webinars for best-practices exchange (International)

International Weekly Exchange: EPRI calls upon operators around the world to exchange best-practices

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) from the States is organizing weekly calls to exchange best-practices in network operation in times of the Corona crisis. Up to 500 professionals have participated in these webcasts to report and learn about preparations and practices in transmission and distrbution. EPRI also offers a higher-level analysis of the impact on system demand profiles in different regions.

If you have interest in participating in these calls, you can contact them directly via email: COVID19-GRID-IMPACTS@epri.com

News

27.05.2020: IEA Analysis of impacts on investments into a sustainable system (International)

14.05.2020: Cyberattack to IT infrastructure supporting the UK electricity market (UK)

12.05.2020: Power Grid is "stable and robust", assure researchers (US)

07.05.2020: Coal-free generation for 27 days, and counting (UK)

06.05.2020: Sizewell nuclear power plant with half output to support balancing the grid (UK)

The British branch of EDF which operates the nuclear fleet in the UK has been requested by the National Grid to operate ist Sizewell power plant at half capacity. This is to balance the grid during the extraordinary period of low demand due to COVID19. Costs are associated with this request but could also help reduce curtailment payments to renewables.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-britain-energy/edf-asked-to-lower-sizewell-nuclear-plant-output-to-help-balance-uk-grid-idUSKBN22I13D

05.05.2020: Constraints to expansion of renewables due to concerns over grid stability (Mexico)

Mexico’s Centro Nacional de Control de Energia (CENACE), the operator of the national electricity System, released a text with new conditions for variable renewable energy sources (PV and wind) to ensure the stability of the grid. This puts the role of renewables into question about its role to contribute to a reliable power supply.

https://renewablesnow.com/news/mix-of-coronavirus-grid-concerns-stop-testing-of-wind-pv-in-mexico-697609/

See the report directly here (in Spanish): https://www.energiaadebate.com/file/1743/index.pdf

04.05.2020: Report analyses the impact of fiscal recovery packages on climate change progress (International)

30.04.2020: IEA looks into the impact of COVID19 in its Global Energy Review 2020 (International)

The annual global review published by IEA looks into the performance of the energy sector in 2019 and quantifies its related CO2 emissions up to 2020. The pandemic puts the sector under great uncertainty and its taken into account to draw potential energy paths.

https://www.iea.org/reports/global-energy-review-2020

30.04.2020: Australian grid could support up to 75% renewables by 2025 (Australia)

27.04.2020: Laying down of transmission lines as essential services (India)

24.04.2020: NERC releases an update of the Special Report: "Pandemic Preparedness and Operational Assessment" (US)

23.04.2020: Critical Infrastructure Operation Centers and Control Rooms Guide for Pandemic Response (US)

20.04.2020: IEX Power Exchange contributes to a more flexible grid through 15 minute trading blocks (India)

The large dip in power demand throughout India urges the use of more flexibility for grid operation.  The Power Exchange introduced 15-minute trading blocks to allow utilities to better dispatch generation with more granularity and closer to real time operation.

https://energy.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/power/covid-19-india-must-use-power-exchanges-to-manage-demand-variation-says-iex/75247171

Read the position from IEX here: https://www.iexindia.com/Uploads/NewsUpdate/20_04_2020Press%20Note%20-%20Flexibility%20with%20IEX_April%2016-final.pdf

15.04.2020: National Grid shows in Summer Outlook report how the COVID19 crisis will impact grid operation in 2020 (UK)

National Grid releases their Summer Outlook report which presents three different scenarios for the power grid taking into account the ongoing lockdown in the UK and experiences faced by other electricity networks across Europe. This document aims to provide the industry with the best guidance possible, considering the current uncertainty.

https://www.nationalgrideso.com/news/summer-outlook-2020

14.04.2020: Request for the implementation of reliability standards to be delayed (North America)

14.04.2020: National Grid creates a village for essential workers in grid operation (UK)

13.04.2020: Duke Energy warns of PPA curtailments (US)

10.04.2020: New York State Grid Operator data shows impact from COVID19 (US)

08.04.2020: Red Eléctrica España organizes "Hackaton Rural COVID-19" (Spain)

07.04.2020: Curtailment due to Force Majeure from distribution companies deemed invalid (India)

Reports of distribution companies curtailing renewable energy without valid reasons has prompted the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) to release a statement. MNRE reiterates the must-run status of renewable energies and stresses that the valid requirement for curtailing should be solely to maintain grid security.

https://mercomindia.com/discoms-force-majeure-curtailing-renewables-null-void/

07.04.2020: Resource guide for assessing and mitigating the Novel Coronavirus (US and Canada)

The Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council (ESCC) cordinates efforts to respond to threats to critical infrastructure and provides documents such as this resource guide, aimed to assist power industry leaders to guide informed localized decisions in response to COVID-19.

Find the updated (07.04.2020) report on: https://www.electricitysubsector.org/

 

06.04.2020: Power grid stands the test after 9-minute countrywide vigil (India)

Demand fluctuates up to 31GW during the 9-minute vigil in India, when the population swichted off lights and appliances. According to a spokesperson from the Power System Operation Corporation Ltd (POSOCO) "The event was managed smoothly without untoward incident while power system parameters were maintained within limits".

https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/9-mnt-vigil-power-sector-pulls-off-pm-modis-challenge-despite-fluctuation-being-higher-than-estimated-5110401.html

 

Here you can find more details in a preliminary report from POSOCO: https://posoco.in/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Preliminary-Report-on-Pan-India-Light-Switch-Off-Event-on-5th-April-2020-2-5.pdf

06.04.2020: Operators in New York go into self-isolation (US)

03.04.2020: Updates about nuclear outage plans during COVID19 (US)

02.04.2020: Wind curtailment on the basis of Force Majeure despite essential service status (South Africa)

The South African Wind Energy Association is seeking a closer cooperation with Eskom, South Africa´s public electrical supplier, to consider the status of IPPs as essential service and plan curtailments in a way that do not prejudice power producers.

https://www.itweb.co.za/content/LPwQ57l6m45qNgkj

02.04.2020: California is curtailing renewables at record levels (US)

02.04.2020: Energy Networks provides a relief package for energy customers (Australia)

31.03.2020: Power industry response to COVID-19 aided by lessons from grid security drills (US)

The biennial event GridEx V led by NERC (North American Electric Reliability Corp) functions as a regular stress test for the bulk power system as industry and government agencies work together to thwart simulated attacks to the grid and then self-assess their emergency response and recovery plans. According to Manny Cancel, NERC senior vice president, "Some of the lessons that we've learned from GridEx and procedures that we've practiced have prepared us for dealing with COVID-19, specifically the business continuity procedures that many of our entities have in place."

https://www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/electric-power/033120-power-industry-response-to-covid-19-aided-by-lessons-learned-from-grid-security-drills

31.03.2020: Ministry of Power delays electricity tariff hike (Nigeria)

27.03.2020: Expansion of renewables deemed essential in some countries (International)

California and India are some of the regions taking the lead to ensure the continuation of installations of renewable energy plants by considering them as essential infrastructure.

California: https://calssa.org/covid/2020/3/21/memo-on-essential-service-exemptions

India: https://mnre.gov.in/

Renewables organizations in other countries, like Spain and Australia, are pushing for this move to avoid a great slow-down in the Integration of renewables and to achieve renewables goals.

Spain (site in Spanish):  https://unef.es/2020/03/el-sector-fotovoltaico-apuesta-por-la-seguridad-a-la-vez-que-garantiza-el-suministro-energetico/

Australia: https://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/news/future-covid-19-restrictions-must-recognise-essential-nature-of-renewable-energy

20.03.2020: Enel says digital drive has given it hedge on coronavirus threat (Italy)

19.03.2020: EPRI analyses the impact on the load in Italy

11.03.2020: Spanish transmission system operator REE strengthens control centres (Spain)

04.03.2020: Trickbot campaign targets Coronavirus fears (Italy)

02.02.2020: Electric Companies & Pandemic Planning - What You Should Know (US)

"Electric companies have a strong track record of preparing for many kinds of emergencies that could impact their ability to generate and/or deliver electricity to their customers and the communities they serve. This business continuity planning includes preparing for events such as storms, earthquakes, and other natural disasters; cyber and physical attacks; and “high absenteeism” events that typically involve health emergencies and that could severely limit the number of employees who are able to report to work.

The electric power industry coordinates its efforts to plan for, prepare, and respond to all hazards that could potentially impact the energy grid—including a pandemic—with our partners at the highest levels of government through the CEO-led Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council (ESCC).

Planning for a health emergency, such as a pandemic, is unique from other business continuity planning because it requires businesses to prepare to operate with a significantly smaller workforce, a threatened supply chain, and limited support services for an extended period of time at an unknown date in the future. The business continuity and pandemic plans developed by electric companies are designed to protect the people working for them and to ensure energy operations and infrastructure are supported properly. These measures help to guarantee that companies can continue to provide safe and reliable electricity throughout an emergency. 

The following information is designed to present an overview of the pandemic planning efforts undertaken by the electric power industry, as well as federal, state, and local governments; provide an update on current pandemic threats; and offer additional resources where you can learn more about pandemic planning."

https://www.powermag.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/electric-companies-and-pandemics-what-you-should-know.pdf

About Edison Electric Institute:

The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) is the association that represents all U.S. investor-owned electric companies. Our members provide electricity for about 220 million Americans, and operate in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. As a whole, the electric power industry supports more than 7 million jobs in communities across the United States. In addition to our U.S. members, EEI has more than 65 international electric companies, with operations in more than 90 countries, as International Members, and hundreds of industry suppliers and related organizations as Associate Members.

 
Organized in 1933, EEI provides public policy leadership, strategic business intelligence, and essential conferences and forums.