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Analysis of the supply-demand balance for summer 2009

Source: RTE 08/06/2009

For summer 2009, generation available in France should be sufficient to cover electricity demand, unless there is a sustained heatwave.

RTE is publishing its forecast analysis of the electricity supply-demand balance for the coming summer period, covering the whole of mainland France. This study is used to identify periods where the supply-demand balance comes under strain; it explores the measures that can be taken by electricity market players and RTE to avoid any interruption in supply.

Demand levels recorded in France during the summer period are far lower than those in winter, when electricity consumption peaks. Nonetheless, periods of high temperatures can lead to reductions in the amount of electricity generated, as power plants are forced to comply with environmental requirements. Also, increased use of air-conditioning and ventilation equipment leads to a rise in electricity demand. The combination of these two phenomena, which were particularly acute during the summers of 2003 and 2006, requires special attention. That is the purpose of the study carried out by RTE.

For temperatures close to seasonal norms, the forecast supply-demand balance for electricity shows no particular difficulties throughout the summer of 2009.

However, a sustained heatwave with temperatures 7C above seasonal norms, would see generation fall and demand rise. In such a scenario, the analysis shows that in order to satisfy electricity demand in France, it could be necessary to obtain additional supply from the European markets, particularly in July, which is expected to be the tightest period of this summer 2009.

Consult Forecast Analysis.