Innovative Dutch Grid Management Contract Reduces Wind Power

The Dutch companies involved are dubbing it the inaugural ‘capacity restriction’ contract, an innovative strategy employed by Eneco to balance the electricity supply from a wind project situated in Farmsum with the demands on the power grid. This approach is designed to mitigate the challenges of peak demand periods, a practice known as congestion management.

In times of peak demand, Eneco will temporarily curtail the production of electricity from this wind energy source, and in return, Enexis will compensate them with a fee for their flexibility in managing the grid.

The focal point of this arrangement is the Farmsum wind farm, nestled in the Dutch province of Groningen. This wind farm is intricately linked to one of Enexis’s medium-voltage stations in Weiwerd. Eneco highlights that the station’s power grid is nearly at its capacity limit. Hence, through this groundbreaking contract, Eneco will enable the wind farm to reduce its electricity output during peak periods, creating additional space on the grid for other needs.

Significantly, this marks the first time that either Enexis or Eneco has entered into such a contractual arrangement. The timing is noteworthy, as the Netherlands is increasingly embracing flexible strategies to manage consumption, a necessity given the grid’s existing capacity constraints.

The Farmsum wind farm possesses a total capacity of approximately 25MW. Under the terms of the contract, Eneco will allocate 10MW of flexible capacity to Enexis, thereby freeing up grid capacity for connecting approximately 30,000 solar panels.

This contract is slated to come into effect on September 1, 2023, and notably, it lacks a fixed termination date. It will persist until the local power grid undergoes the necessary upgrades to accommodate increased capacity.

Lucien Wiegers, the director of Eneco’s trading division EET, expressed satisfaction with this pioneering agreement, noting that they anticipate securing several more such contracts, not only for their own wind and solar farms but also for those managed on behalf of others.

Karin Mathijssen, director of large business customers at Enexis, underscored the significance of these flexible contracts in the evolving energy landscape. She expressed confidence in the potential for signing more contracts of this nature in the near future. Enexis remains dedicated to serving its customers on the waiting list and is actively seeking partners capable of supplying flexible capacity, inspired by Eneco’s exemplary approach.