On 29 September 2018, “Economichna Pravda” published a letter from the Security Service of Ukraine to the Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groisman, stating about the possible destabilisation of the power system of Ukraine due to unreasonable issuance of technical conditions for RES connection on the part of SE NPC Ukrenergo.
We would like to make it clear that at present, RES facilities (solar and wind power plants) operating within the Integrated Power System (IPS) of Ukraine pose a threat neither to the energy security of our state nor to the sustainable and reliable operation of the country’s power system. SE NPC Ukrenergo will prevent any failures in the operation of the IPS of Ukraine or overload in the power grids, especially with respect to the restrictions on the operation of nuclear power plants. After all, the main task of Ukrenergo as a transmission system operator for electricity is to ensure the balance of production and consumption of electricity, thus guaranteeing stable operation of the power system, reliable energy supply to consumers and energy security of the state.
In turn, we hereby inform that the letter sent by the SSU used the materials prepared upon the results of the internal audit of Ukrenergo’s structural subdivision “Research and Design Centre for Development of the IPS of Ukraine”, initiated by SE NPC Ukrenergo and joined by two representatives of the SSU at our initiative. Accordingly, the technical conclusions in the SSU letter were prepared by the specialists of SE NPC Ukrenergo and submitted to the Security Service of Ukraine for information in the form of a report of Ukrenergo’s working group.
We consistently support the development of environmentally clean “green” energy generation in Ukraine since the tendencies of the development of international energy markets are evident – this is the world energy future. Definitely, Ukraine will not stand aside. Still, during the whole year, we are openly talking about the problems associated with the development of “green” generation, including those listed in the SSU’s letter based on our findings. In particular, the fact that a rapid increase in the share of RES in the grid may cause problems with its balancing. However, any restrictions regarding the connection of RES and issuance of technical specifications are prohibited by the Transmission System Code. Thus, subparagraph 1.7 of Section III specifies that the transmission system operator does not have the right to refuse the connection of power installations to the transmission system if the Customer meets the requirements of this Code.
In April 2018, we publicly announced the necessity to build 2500 MW of high-manoeuvrable capacities in the power grid and introduce a system of precise forecasting of RES operation to address the problems of the green energy growth by 2025.
Based on the results of the analysis, we simulated several scenarios if no steps are taken to properly balance the green energy. In particular, the main negative consequences will include the restriction of RES with compensation of the “green” tariff for the electricity that has not been generated or the increase in the volume of coal generation and limitation of nuclear generation in view of the need to increase the possibilities for balancing. Both scenarios will become a significant obstacle to overcoming the dependence on fossil fuels and improving the environment in the state.
In addition, in order to thoroughly investigate the issues, we also conducted an analysis of operating modes of the power grids with a voltage of 110 kV and higher in the southern regions of Ukraine under the conditions of an expected increase in wind and solar generation. We identified a number of problematic issues that require urgent organisational and technical measures to ensure the sustainable operation of the IPS of Ukraine. Particular attention was paid to the compliance of adopted technical decisions, when considering the applications regarding RES connection, with the existing regulatory documents. First of all, in terms of compliance with the conditions for the power delivery from Zaporizka NPP, as well as the admissibility of operation of transit networks 110-150 kV in the southern regions. The findings of the specialists of SE NPC Ukrenergo were presented in the form of a report on adequacy of generating capacities to state authorities and the Security Service of Ukraine. They also constituted the basis of the letter from the Security Service of Ukraine to the Prime Minister of Ukraine.
Further development of the situation in the “green” energy sector will depend on systemic decisions of the state authorities. In particular, the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission (NEURC) has to approve the report of SE NPC Ukrenergo on the adequacy of generation, while the Ministry of Energy and the Coal Industry has to announce a competition for the construction of new high-manoeuvrable generating capacities for balancing RES.
On its part, SE NPC Ukrenergo puts many efforts to develop constructive partnerships with Western investors, including through the information policy of corporate transparency and openness. New web-services of the company (an interactive map of connections on the company’s website, implementation of the “single window” project for connections are aimed at creating the most transparent and equal conditions for all participants in the energy market. In particular, since the launch of the “single window”, we received 1345 applications regarding connection and issued contracts for the connection of power installations to the grid of SE NPC Ukrenergo for the total capacity of 3,115.29 MW.
The process of RES development in Ukraine serves currently as an indicator of investment attractiveness of our country for the international community. That is why our shared well-balanced communication position on internal settlement processes is extremely important in terms of the reputation of Ukrainian energy sector as an attractive sector for investments, which has become the basis for deep integration reforms. We look forward to continuing constructive cooperation with state security authorities in the area of timely response to potential external threats to the Ukrainian energy system and their support for the above-mentioned initiatives in the course of reforming the Ukrainian energy sector.
Detailed information regarding the analysis of the situation with Ukrenergo can be found in the presentations on the company’s corporate website, as well as in the section with analytical reports.