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Summary of Tjänster för efterfrågeflexibilitet Ei 2017:09

This is a brief summary of the report Tjänster för efterfrågeflexibilitet - Sammanställning av tekniska krav och övriga villkor för tillhandahållandet av tjänster i form av ändrad elförbrukning Ei 2017:09. The report is only available in Swedish and is a yearly study, made by the Swedish Energy Markets Inspectorate.

Background

Enabling more flexible demand is high on the European agenda. In the future electricity market with a high proportion of renewable and variable electricity production, utilising all the flexible resources in the electricity system, including flexible production, storage and flexible demand, will be important.

Flexible demand is desirable for many reasons. While adjusting demand to available production, the risk of a power deficit is reduced and thereby also the need for new investments in the power system to safeguard demand during peak loads. Demand side flexibility can also decrease the frequency of activation of high-emission production resources in a deficit situation. Overall, increased demand side flexibility will result in more efficient use of resources and contributes to reaching climate and energy policy goals.

Enabling more flexible demand is therefore a significant goal for the development of the Swedish electricity market, as well as for the European Union.

Every year the Swedish Energy Markets Inspectorate (Ei) is responsible for studying if the network operators in any way sets up hinders for utilisation of demand response services. The result of this study in 2017 is presented in the report.

This is what we did

Ei has studied the markets for demand response services in Sweden during 2017. The study was carried out as two questionnaires. The first questionnaire was to the distribution system operators (DSOs). 40 DSOs received the questionnaire and replied.

The second questionnaire was to the electricity trading companies and the energy service providers. This questionnaire was online and open for all relevant companies. Eight electricity trading companies and energy service providers answered the questionnaire.

These are the results

The DSOs state that they do not set up requirements which hinders services from demand response service providers. One DSO replies that they require the service provider not to disturb the communication system of smart meters.

Another DSO replies that they would recommend the service provider to locate their equipment between the main breaker and the customer. Ei concludes that, in general, the DSOs in Sweden do not set up requirements which hinders demand response.

Four out of 40 DSOs state that they have measures to steer electricity consumption. Three quarter of the DSOs states that they do not have such measures. The rest of the DSOs do not answer this question. Furthermore, many DSOs mention that they lack economic incentives to take advantage of demand response. However, many DSOs believe that demand response is beneficial for them, for example through peak-shaving.

Most of the electricity trading companies and service providers participating in the study provide demand response services. Many companies comment on the barriers that they have experienced. The barriers can be summarised as: Lack of requirements for hourly metering, lack of access to real time consumption data and hard-to-reach markets for customers willing to trade their flexibility.

Many of the service providers state that they are interested in offering demand side flexibility to the DSOs, mainly for peak-shaving. A few of them mention that low interest from the DSOs also hinders the development of demand response. Some companies describe their ongoing projects which relate to demand response, others indicate their willingness to cooperate with DSOs to develop more tailored services of demand response.