Tendencias y Estudios / Energía que transforma

COVID-19: Flexibility and The Grid—Improving Available Flexibility for Abnormal Grid Operating Conditions

While the full extent of operational lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic have yet to be experienced, some learnings are already noteworthy. In particular:   Despite substantial drops in demand and amid an ongoing growth in the installed capacity of variable renewables, most operational conditions do not pose an extraordinary challenge to normal, reliable grid operation.

      In certain locations and subregions, during low de- mand conditions, the potential for over-supply or low net-demand related operational risks may emerge in some periods.
    To prepare for those outlier conditions, grid operators should have certainty and  clarity about  procedures to control distributed energy and ‘contractually pro- tected’ resources in emergency conditions. If possible, this should be codified in grid connection codes or operations security standards.
    Consideration should be given to opportunities to secure access to additional flexibility for prolonged, abnormal operating conditions when market, contrac- tual, or scheduling processes are not suspended.
    Generation availability may be affected in the near- to mid-term by reduced maintenance programs or by financial issues owing to lower running hours for mar- ginal generation. These factors may warrant a cautious approach to future resource adequacy assessments.