Dutch electricity transmission system operator (TSO) Tennet has unveiled a plan to invest €235 million to enhance grid renewables capacity in the northern Netherlands.
The company, which also operates in Germany, said the funds would be used to enable the integration of around 2 GW of solar and wind power generation capacity to the country’s northern high-voltage transmission system. Tennet wants to build two 380 kV/110 kV high-voltage stations in Groningen and Drenthe as well as increasing capacity at 110 kV stations in Bargermeer, Coevorden, Emmen Weerdinge, Hardenberg, Klazienaveen, Musselkanaal Zandberg, Ommen Dante, Stadskanaal and Veenoord.
The investment, Tennet said, comes on top of the €1 billion it recently spent increasing grid capacity. In January, Tennet and fellow TSO Enexis said there was very limited capacity for more solar in the provinces of Groningen, Drenthe and Overijssel.
With grid infrastructure enhancement having a long lead-in time, Tennet has warned solar parks in the region may be temporarily shuttered if the supply of clean energy exceeds demand, to prevent overloading the system.
Any such move, however, would be temporary, the TSO added. “After all, there is no complete overview of all possible applications that are yet to come,” Tennet added.
The grid company said it will also use reserve power plant capacity in the 110 kV grid to integrate another 500 MW of solar power. However, the TSO is still awaiting approval from the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets for the proposal.
The Dutch government last month revealed it may have to sell off a stake in state-owned Tennet, or privatize it altogether, to raise the funds needed to upgrade the network for a renewables-led energy system.