VERBUND in Bavaria
VERBUND in Bavaria: Austrian-Bavarian energy congress on the security of supply
VERBUND is the largest producer of hydropower in Bavaria and Austria. In Bavaria alone, VERBUND operates 22 hydropower plants with an installed capacity of 1,000 MW. VERBUND’s entire installed power plant capacity amounts to some 8,000 MW from renewable energy sources (primarily hydropower) and some 1,400 MW from thermal energy production. In 2013, VERBUND’s power plants generated a total amount of some 35.5 TWh of electricity, approx. 31 TWh of which was electricity from hydropower (inc. Bavaria).
The Bavaria-Austrian Energy Congress, held on 1 December in Munich, dealt with the question of how supply security can be mutually assured. In the process, VERBUND’s position was communicated with ambiguity in subsequent media reports. According to current figures from the energy platform "Energie-Dialog Bayern", the deficit for Bavaria is 40 TWh in the case of the amount of electricity generated and 5 GW for the guaranteed capacity. On account of the regional proximity of its highly flexible power plants, VERBUND is able to offer Bavaria a co-operation for the provision of guaranteed capacity and therewith make a contribution to the closure of the performance gap.
Austria and Germany are VERBUND’s most important markets. Between Austria and Germany lies a cross-border electricity market, one that is most notably characterised by the joint price zone. VERBUND has a great deal of interest in the maintenance of this joint price zone, since this also contributes to a more efficient and more secure supply of electricity in Bavaria and Austria.
The prices on the joint market are also decisive in the application of the power plants in Austria and Bavaria. Whilst new, flexible power plants (modern, gas-fired power plants and pumped storage power plants) are subject to economic pressure in both countries on account of the current market situation, they could make valuable contributions to the guaranteed capacity. It is the electricity market that determines the extent to which this occurs. Furthermore, the regulatory authorities determine provisions for a joint grid reserve in order to also be equipped for critical supply situations.