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Germany bolsters gas supply warning system

Gas

25 Nov 2022 10:32

Image: Shutterstock.com

Image: Shutterstock.com

Frankfurt

25 Nov 2022 10:32

(Montel) Germany’s network regulator BNA introduced on Friday five indicators for assessing the country’s security of gas supply amid the current energy crisis.

“They are intended to create transparency,” said BNA president Klaus Mueller, adding they would help identify how close Germany was to a gas supply shortage.

Europe is struggling with an energy supply crisis caused by the fallout from the Ukraine war and the curtailment of Russian gas flows. Germany, the EU’s biggest gas importer, has suffered hard from the lost supplies.

The indicators introduced by BNA include a temperature outlook, temperature-adjusted gas consumption, storage levels, system balancing and the situation in neighbouring countries.

All five indicators are classified as "stable", "tense" and "critical" – with all currently in the stable range. The country is currently on alert, at the second of a three-stage gas emergency plan initiated by Berlin.

The decision to declare a gas shortage still lies with the government, Mueller said.

Weather crucial
Temperatures were “decisive” for household gas consumption and will play a crucial role this winter amid supply limitations, said Mueller.

The BNA expected it could become “tense” if temperatures were forecast at 0-2C below the 2018-2021 average in the next seven days, or “critical” if temperatures drop more than 2C below the reference.

This would equate to an additional 2 TWh of gas demand over one week, it said.

Meanwhile, the gas demand indicator remains stable if more than 25% gas is saved in temperature-adjusted terms.

Storage target
The storage indicator is based on government targets, so that if the storage level is on a path to fall below 40% on 1 February 2023, the situation would be critical. Currently, Germany’s gas storage levels are almost 99% full.

It would also become critical in the balancing market if neither the exchange or control energy auctions provide sufficient volumes to keep the system stable.

Further, the BNA would step up the indicator for neighbouring countries depending on whether another government raises its gas emergency level.

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