At national level, the main tasks of transmission system operators (TSOs) are the transport of electricity from producers to large consumers and distribution networks, ensuring the operational safety as well as the planning, development and modernisation of electricity grids to ensure security of supply and cost-efficiency. More recently, TSOs have also been held responsible for achieving climate and energy policy objectives. European TSOs have also long been thinking and acting across borders in an increasingly integrated energy market. To ensure safe operation at European level, national TSOs coordinate at regional and pan-European level.
The European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) now has published the “Enhanced TSO Regional Coordination for Europe” report, coming with the suggestive subtitle: “Act locally, coordinate regionally, think European”. This report with a time perspective until 2030 describes the shift of the five European Regional Security Coordinators (RSCs) such as TSCNET Services to Regional Coordination Centres (RCCs) in the wake of the Clean Energy Package (CEP). It focuses on operational and market needs, without disregarding the fact that regional cooperation between TSOs goes beyond these two issues. Nevertheless, the emphasis was put on these aspects, as markets and operations are more and more converging: Electricity is traded closer to real time, markets are more volatile, generation is more variable and cross-border and long-distance transmission are increasing. For this reason, the interfaces between market and physical infrastructure require to be consolidated.
The “Enhanced TSO Regional Coordination for Europe” report contains several recommendations and a roadmap for the coordination of TSOs to continue on the path towards a future European energy system that is sustainable, socially balanced and reliable. The five standard operational services of the RSCs – Common Grid Model, Coordinated Operational Planning, Security Analysis, Outage Planning Coordination, Short- to Medium-Term Adequacy Forecast, and Coordinated Capacity Calculation – and the Service for Organisational Support – Consistency Check of TSOs’ System Defence and Restoration Plans – are to be ported from RSCs to RCCs over the next decade.