The European Commission will unveil a 584 billion euro plan to modernize the continent’s electricity grids so they are ready to handle the expected influx of electricity from renewable sources, Bloomberg reports.
The EU executive will next week present its vision to stimulate investment in the backbone of the energy transition, especially for cross-border connections that better integrate offshore renewable electricity. The plan contains a promise to accelerate the obtaining of authorizations and calls for new financing instruments, including from the European Investment Bank.
“European electricity grids are facing significant new challenges,” states a European Commission working document consulted by Bloomberg. “The networks will have to cope with an increased demand related to clean mobility, heating and cooling, electrification of industry and the start of green hydrogen production,” the document also states, which may undergo changes before publication, according to Agerpres.
Electricity transmission networks will be under great pressure in the coming years as Member States commission new solar and wind power plants that reach their maximum capacity at different times of the day and year. This highlights the need for “smart” networks that incorporate storage solutions, such as batteries, so that the flow of electricity reaches where and when it is most needed.
The said document points out that 40% of the continent’s distribution networks are more than four decades old. In contrast, electricity consumption is expected to rise by 60% by 2030.
Europe’s electricity industry has warned that grids are becoming an obstacle to the delivery of clean energy because power grids are not being upgraded fast enough to keep up with the multitude of renewable energy projects waiting to be brought onto the grid.