The European Power System in 2030 – Flexibility Challenges and Integration Benefits

  • Webinar
  • 09.07.2015, 11:00 - 12:00
© Rolf Schulten

How will wind power and solar PV deployment shape European and regional power systems by 2030? What are the challenges of integrating these variable renewable energy sources into national power systems? What will be the benefit of stronger integration at the regional and European level?

During this webinar, Christian Redl and Dimitri Pescia, Senior Associates of Agora's European Energy Cooperation team, presented key results of a recent study with a focus on the Pentalateral Energy Forum region conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy System Technologies (Fraunhofer IWES) on behalf of Agora Energiewende. Of course, a Q&A Session was also part of it.

Background of the study (to be found in the Download-section at the bottom of this page)
In 15 years, around half of the electricity generation in Europe should come from renewable energies in order to achieve 2030 EU climate goals agreed in October 2014. The lion’s share (around a third of all power production) is expected to come from wind power and solar PV, as they are the lowest-cost renewable sources. This also applies to the seven countries of the regional initiative “Pentalateral Energy Forum” (Germany, France, the Benelux countries, Austria and Switzerland).

Due to the fact that they are weather dependent, wind and solar power plants pose a challenge for national power systems, as variation in their output must be offset by other power plants, adjustments in power consumption patterns or storage facilities. Regional integration of power systems can significantly help cut costs in balancing out renewables and maximizing their utilization, as smoothing effects occur across countries, while reducing demands on other parts of the system. Yet, the structure of the conventional power supply will need to change to a more flexible one, capable to quickly adjusting its output. These are key conclusions of the study by Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy System Technologies (Fraunhofer IWES) commissioned by Agora Energiewende.