currENT Feedback on Commission Proposal COM(2021) 557 amending Directive (EU) 2018/2001 on the promotion of energy from renewable sources energy
Fit for 55 Package
Supplying carbon-free electricity and electrification of heat and transport, to the greatest extent practicable, are preconditions for decarbonising Europe’s economies.
Europe is already experiencing the challenges of integration limitations on weather-dependent electricity technologies. In Ireland, 11.4% (1.45 TWh) of total available wind power was wasted through dispatch-down (curtailment) caused by grid constraints in 2020, and in Denmark, 8.9% (1.46 TWh) of the wind power was curtailed.
Europe needs to dramatically increase power system capability and flexibility in the coming decades to accommodate renewables. This must be provided for by increased interconnection and innovative grid infrastructure, including in the offshore space where no grids exist today. Furthermore, Europe’s existing transmission grid and the grid under development must also be utilised better, e.g. by deploying new grid enhancing technology.
The proposed amendments to the Renewables Directive contain useful measures to increase sector coupling and electrification of heating and transport. However – except for the proposals on offshore wind energy grid planning – neither the proposal amending the Renewables Directive nor any other element of the Fit for 55 Package adequately addresses the need to rapidly and dramatically change the way we operate our existing electricity grids and how we apply new, innovative grid technology. Such solutions as dynamic line rating, modular power flow technology, and superconducting cable systems can play a crucial role in addressing the grid-barriers that are already becoming apparent as we move towards an energy system dependent upon variable solar and wind power.
currENT would have expected the Commission to have proposed changes, e.g. through amendments to Regulation (EU) 2019/943 on the Internal Market for electricity, requiring TSOs and DSOs to accelerate the uptake of innovative and grid enhancing technologies and provide for greater transmission grid research, development and innovation in cooperation with the private sector and research institutions.
The complete response can be accessed here.