German grid fluctuations increasing
German economics newspaper Handelsblatt reports today that industry, including foreign firms, are detecting more frequent frequency fluctuations on the German grid, possibly as a result of the shutdown of nuclear power and the growth of renewables on the grid.
Handelsblatt says that the German subsidiary of Norway's Norsk Hydro has written a letter to Matthias Kurth, president of the German Network Agency, complaining that there have been considerable obstacles towards production. Specifically, the aluminum manufacturer allegedly speaks of the "disturbing Frequency of grid and frequency fluctuations" In the letter, which has been made available to the paper.
In the premium article, the newspaper also says it found in a survey of large industrial power consumers, who collectively make up 80 percent of industrial electricity consumption in Germany – that a lot of companies have similar complaints.
Last month, Polish grid operator PSE also complained of "uncontrolled, dangerous currents" and warned that it might begin to restrict power transmission across the border from Germany to prevent blackouts. The result could put a strain on the German grid if these power surges cannot flow into neighboring countries.
The news is especially bad for the current efforts to increase power trading across international lines within the EU, one of Energy Commissioner Oettinger's main goals. (Craig Morris)