To buy tertiary reserves, Elia can sign contracts with customers to, where necessary, restore balance on its grid. These are called sheddable customers.
Aim: to reduce these customers’ loads to a contractually agreed level, a limited number of times a year, in return for compensation.
When Elia activates the service, the customer’s off-take must be reduced to below a particular load level (known as ‘Shedding Limit A’ or SLA), agreed on in advance by Elia and the customer. The off-take level must be brought below the SLA within three minutes.
The interruptions take place using a remote control which activates an automatic device located in the customer’s process.
The duration of the interruption is limited to eight hours with a maximum of four activations permitted for the duration of the contract. This product is called A 8. Another product, A 4, is also available, except that the duration of interruption is limited to four hours.
Elia does not demand that customers guarantee off-take levels and does not impose an exclusivity clause.
Elia will not give prior notice in the event of A8 or A4 activation. Consequently, customers who require prior notice before they can reduce their off-take level should not use these products.
Customers are expected to make at least 5 MW (on average) available to Elia for each access point.
Is it possible to combine products A4 and A8?
No. Bidders can offer both products but only one product will be accepted if a contract is signed.
Will ARPs (Access Responsible Parties) be informed of the names of grid users with which Elia has concluded an interruptibility contract?
Yes. A clause in the interruptibility contract provides for this. However, no mention will be made of the shedding limit (SLA4 or 8) agreed with grid users.
If a grid user has already signed a contract with its ARP (Access Responsible Party) for a product similar to the one offered by Elia, can the ARP ‘sell on’ this service to Elia?
Elia will only sign a user interruptibility contract with an ARP if it has the explicit approval of the grid user.
Does interruptibility affect the subscription process?
The subscription process is in no way affected by a grid user’s interruptibility. However, the fee for use of product A does depend on annual and monthly subscription levels.