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Power Results 2001 -

Source: RTE 04/01/2002

RTE notes that 2001 was marked by record internal consumption in instantaneous power and electricity exchanges with foreign countries.

RTE, the French Transmission System Operator, has just drawn up the provisional results concerning power flows on the French power system in 2001.

Electricity generation

French electricity output came to 526.7 TWh in 2001, an increase of +1.9% compared with the prior year. This increase is divided up between generation of nuclear origin, up +1.5%, and generation of hydro origin, up +10.8% due in particular to the high water availability observed in the first 8 months of 2001. As for conventional thermal output, it dropped -7.6%, due to its role in providing power during peak load periods so as to achieve balance between power generation and consumption.

Internal power consumption

French internal power consumption came to 452.5 TWh in 2001, an increase of about 12 TWh compared with the previous year, which corresponds to a growth rate of +2.7%. This rise is due to the increased power consumption of industrial and residential customers supplied by power distribution networks, the result of the economic growth witnessed in France in 2001, as well as climatic disparities between 2001 and 2000, particularly at the end of the year. Consumption adjusted for weather contingencies came to 457.5 TWh for 2001, i.e. a growth rate of +1.9% compared with 2000 adjusted for the leap year effect.

The historic power consumption record of January 2000 was bettered on several occasions at the end of 2001; the new record of instantaneous power consumption, recorded on Monday, 17 December, is now 77,080 MW, i.e. 4,700 MW more than the record set in 2000.

Power exchanges with foreign countries

The volumes of energy covered by contracts for power imports and exports with foreign countries have increased considerably compared with 2000: doubling of the volume of import contracts to 26 TWh; a + 15% increase in export contracts which came to 93.6 TWh . Thus, the cumulative volume of contractual exchanges with foreign countries amounted to 119.6 TWh. This expresses the implementation of the new electricity market rules: purchases by eligible customers abroad, sales abroad by power producers established in France, cross-border transfers, energy purchases abroad to cover part of the losses on the RTE network.

The physical flows at the frontiers were subject to major fluctuations according to the activity of the European electricity market; thus, the export balance of physical exchanges in power and energy bettered its absolute record on several occasions in 2001. The new records of export balance of physical exchanges were set on Thursday, 6 December, bringing the record for power to 12,984 MW and the record for daily energy to 297 GWh.

The export balance of physical exchanges with foreign countries, equal to 68.4 TWh in 2001, showed a decrease of 1.1 TWh i.e. -1.6% compared with 2000, following a drop in physical exports of about 0.6 TWh while physical imports rose by 0.5 TWh.

Press Officer:
Michel DERDEVET- Director, RTE Communication and External Relations Tel: