Netherlands updates grid congestion map


Netbeheer Nederland, the Dutch association of national and regional power network operators, has updated the congestion map for the high-voltage and medium-voltage grid, which shows which areas in the Netherlands are seeing increasing constraints for the deployment of large scale wind and solar power plants.

“Grid capacity has already been greatly expanded by installing more transmission lines and transformer stations … however, that is not fast enough, as solar parks, for example, are being built faster than grid operators can build,” the association said in a statement.

Netbeheer Nederland stressed that the map's colored areas are those with the highest grid congestion levels. That does not mean, however, that grid issues will not be present in the non-colored areas and renewable energy project developers in those areas should not expect a guarantee of immediate grid availability.

“The network operators are making an urgent appeal to the future cabinet to speed up the processing times for permits and to make clear choices about which parties should be given priority and at which locations,” the association stated, noting that the current rule is prioritizing projects on a first-come, first-served basis.

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Dutch electricity transmission system operator (TSO) Tennet recently developed an interactive online map showing the locations in the country where the power grid is most congested. Tennet specified that this map will be updated on a quarterly basis and that changes may occur if additional capacity becomes available due to an expansion of infrastructure or if a station has reached its maximum capacity due to new grid-connection requests.

In November 2020, Netbeheer Nederland and the Dutch renewable energy associations De Nederlandse Vereniging Duurzame Energie (NVDE) and Holland Solar signed a preliminary agreement to ensure faster and cheaper grid connection of large scale solar power plants, in an effort to reduce pressure on the network.

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