Proposals for improved access to storage facilities in Germany have been added to the natural gas transmission grid operators' final version of their grid development plan.
The plan, published on Tuesday, outlines the needed additional gas infrastructure in Germany until 2022.
It estimates the cost of building new transport capacity to improve access to storage facilities in Haidach, 7Fields (in Austria, close to the border) and Etzel at E750m.
Both planned and under-construction grid developments such as the NEL pipeline connecting the Rehden and Nordstream have been added too.
Lack of time
The lack of time to answer the consultation was the most common criticism of the 46 submissions from market participants about the last draft of the plan. But German regulator Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA) only approved the natural gas demand scenarios to be used for the development plan at the beginning of February, shortening the time frame for the TSOs to revise the plan.
The TSOs were also critical of the time frame and said not all criticisms raised by participants could be included in the latest plan.
The TSOs did not calculate the costs for all the three scenarios on future gas demand, but focused solely on the second scenario because of the time frame. According to this scenario, considered the most probable, total gas consumption in Germany is forecast to be 784TWh in 2015. By 2022, consumption is predicted to be 737TWh a reduction of 11% compared with 2009.
In the first stage of grid expansion, up to 2015, the TSOs forecast that E600m is needed to build 200km of new pipelines. The second stage, 2015-2022, will require 730km of new pipes and an additional 360MW of compressor capacity. The costs by 2022 are predicted hit E2.2bn.
BNetzA now has to approve the final version of the plan, but has not given any details on when a decision is expected.
The most criticised part of the last draft was lack transparency about how capacity within Germany is calculated and lack of cross-border capacity. The TSOs agreed to clarify the basis of their calculations by providing a detailed list of available capacities on cross-border and cross-market points by mid-April. MH
Copyright 2012 Heren Energy Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
(Originally published April 3, 2012, in European Spot Gas Markets.)