France’s power and gas system operators enter partnership to improve integration of renewables

France’s electricity transmission system operator RTE, a unit of the EDF group, and French natural gas transmission system operator GRTgaz, a subsidiary of France-based energy company Engie, have announced a partnership to accelerate the transition to a power network turned towards the integration of renewable energies.

In the frame of this partnership, the two companies will launch the online platform opendata.reseaux-energies.fr, which will include data on power production and consumption at both a national and regional level. The new platform will integrate data coming from the companies’ respective platforms Open Data RTE, Open Data GRTgaz, and from the  applications GRTgaz+ and éCO2mix. RTE added that the platform will also include data from other power and gas grid operators in the near future.

Furthermore, RTE said it will join the GRTgaz’s Jupiter 1000 power-to-gas project, an initiative aimed at assessing the technical and economic viability of this technology. Power-to-gas, RTE stressed, is useful for transforming power surplus from renewable energy sources into methane. After CO2 capture, methane can be injected into the gas grid or stored.

The 1 MW Jupiter 1000 project is being developed at the Fos sur Mer harbour nearby Marseille, Department of Bouches-du-Rhône in southern France. The project implements two technologies of electrolyzers: PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) and Alkaline. Both technologies contribute to 0.5 MW each. The project is co-financed by the European Union under the FEDER funds, by the French government as part of the “Investissements d’Avenir” program entrusted to ADEME and the Provence-Alpes-Côtes d’Azur regional council.

Moreover, GRTgaz and RTE have signed two cooperation agreements to pool their skills in engineering, technical expertise and prospective analysis.