France is on alert ! Never has the risk of power outages been greater than: for winter 2022 – 2023 that looms. In order to limit or even avoid the risk, the electricity transmission system operator, RTE, proposes: the Ecowatt device. The latter also asks for sobriety in terms of electricity consumption.
“austerity”, this is currently the word on everyone’s lips regarding the energy crisis that France is going through. find a balance between superfluous consumption and satisfaction of needs is the most important lever to achieve a sober energy society. The goal is also to avoid power cuts. Marc Benayoun, executive director of EDF, however, estimated that at the electricity level ” very strong chance » that France gets through the winter without incident.
Prevent power outages
— Pierre-Franck Thomé-Jassaud (@pfthome) October 10, 2022
In the current context, France’s energy transition is one of the government’s top priorities. France needs to get rid of its dependence on fossil fuels and reduce its energy consumption by 40% by 2050.
“Sobriety is here to unwind”warned the government by presenting its winter energy saving plan on Thursday 6 October. From public services to businesses, including sports and housing, dozens of measures are planned to address it.
For example, the Ecowatt system was implemented by RTE and the French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME). It warns consumers when electricity consumption is too high to promote “eco gestures” and prevent power outages. The winter of 2022 promises to be tense on the issue.
⛔️ Energy Crisis – “Beware of Cooking at 7:00 PM: Avoid Burning Your 4 Fires at the Same Time on Your Stovetop”
—RTL France (@RTLFrance) September 15, 2022
Attention ! In the field of electricity the vigilance period starts in autumn and lasts for several months. ” When the electrical system is heavily loaded, the risk of cuts cannot be completely excluded. But it could be prevented. By reducing national consumption by 1 to 5% in most cases. And up to 15% in the most extreme weather conditions”, explained the operator of the electricity transmission grid.
However, Xavier Piechaczyk, Chairman of the Board of Directors of RTE, judges that ” we can eliminate much of the risk if we are very proactive about sobrietyas well as mobilization around Ecowatt’s red signal during peak consumption”.
The ecowatt device
In concrete terms, the Ecowatt device indicates whether a risk of voltage on the French electricity grid. This means that consumption exceeds the available electricity, in real time, but also in the next three days.
“Each of us has the power to reduce electricity consumption in France through simple actions. With Ecowatt, you can know the moments when eco gestures have the greatest impact on the electrical system. By shifting certain applications, you help ensure everyone’s electricity supply during periods of supply voltage. Let’s take the right steps! » rightly declares the website of the Ecowatt system. This site also provides valuable advice to prevent the French from often groping in the dark.
Marc Benayoun, EDF Executive Director in charge of Customer, Services and Territories, took part in a roundtable on energy security in the Senate this Wednesday. TotalEnergies CEO Patrick Pouyanné and Engie CEO Catherine MacGregor were also in attendance.
Voluntary Interruptions and Power Outages
” France has a potential for voluntary interruptions in electricity consumption (limitation) of 5 to 6 gigawatts (GW), which could avoid power cuts this wintersaid Marc Benayoun, before the Senate Economic Affairs Committee.
” The country threatens to be electricity usage coming winter to avoid targeted power cuts in a context of heightened security of supply tensions”warned RTE in mid-September.
“If we are sure of very cold temperatures, with a power demand of 90 GW at peak times… 5-6 GW can be 5-6% power. And this is what can help to avoid strain at these times,” says Marc Benayoun. “There has been no power outage in France since 1978. And even if we are in a very difficult situation, there are still very good chance that we will get through the winter without load sheddinghe added.
And to remind the Executive Director: “ If the gas supplies are normally filled and things look good, you should know that the trigger temperatures, which endanger the electrical system (…) are -4°C degrees for a few more days. We had such a cold spell last year. Luckily it was between Christmas and New Years. At a time when consumption was low and so there were no problems”;
The “erasures” evoked by Marc Benayoun are voluntary interruptions of consumption. They are based on reward systems and price incentives.
Marc Benayoun also indicated that EDF was aiming for an increase of approximately 1 GW in demand response capacity. And that within our own customer portfolio, which today amounts to a total of about 2 GW.
This senior executive of EDF also indicated that, in the context of rising prices, a large number of customers returned to EDF after using to the competition For several years.
” Many customers return in all segments. Alternative providers are not doing so well – apart from the very large ones, of course (.). We close 2022 with a higher market share than at the beginning of the year. And it’s been a long time since that happened‘ said Marc Benayoun.