Working Group Balancing

  • President: James Matthys-Donnadieu
  • Secretary: Jean-Christophe Cattrysse

This Working Group mainly addresses operational, technical and market related issues in order to prepare ourselves for the challenges our balancing market will face in the upcoming years.

The Elia grid is part of the European continental interconnected system running from Portugal to Bulgaria and from Norway to Italy. Our National Control Centre maintains an instantaneous balance between generation and consumption and manages energy flows in close collaboration with the transmission system operators from neighboring countries.

A number of factors are radically changing this role, leading to a need for increasingly sophisticated tools and skills:

  • increasing exchanges of energy between national electrical systems following market liberalization;
  • the variability of energy flows on the transmission systems due to the growing share of energy generated by renewable, and intermittent, sources (especially wind energy and photovoltaic panels);
  • Germany, Switzerland and Belgium’s decision to abandon nuclear energy in the next two decades;
  • the growing share of energy generated by generation units connected to the distribution systems that do not contribute considerably to the balancing of the electrical system;
  • the postponement, year after year, of construction of large generation units due to the difficulties involved in obtaining permits and the uncertainties associated for example with the financial and economic crisis.

Against this fast-changing context, new skills and tools must be developed. The Working Group Balancing is the platform via which Elia will consult the market when proposing evolutions to balancing and ancillary service mechanisms. Elia will finalize its proposals taking into account the input of the Working Group and will then require appropriate approvals. Amongst others, the following topics will be handled by this Working Group:

  • Evolutions to balancing services (primary, secondary and tertiary control)
  • The “Bid Ladder” project
  • Participation of load to provide balancing services
  • Future vision for procurement and diversification of resources
  • Enhancements to our on-line balancing publications
  • Possible cross border balancing synergies

The Working Group Balancing reports to the Users' Group.

You can see the agenda for the working group’s meetings on the ‘Agenda’ page