Those in charge of making sure the nation’s lights stay on could see a problem looming as they took stock of power flows from suppliers last Tuesday. With wind turbines spinning slowly on a calm winter’s day, demand rising in the cold weather, and the BritNed link bringing power from the Netherlands unavailable, they needed to increase the buffer for the next day, fast. An urgent call to the market for a potential 584MW of capacity was answered and the notice stood down. It came at a price, however, with hourly wholesale electricity prices briefly shooting up to £1,000 per MWh – a 10-fold increase. It is the fourth time National Grid’s Electricity System Operator has issued such a notice since late 2020, in a sign of the growing complexities of managing the system, which has a greater proportion of wind power and also some gas and nuclear plants offline.
Telegraph 9th Jan 2021 read more »