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How did the German and other European electricity systems react to the COVID-19 pandemic?

: Halbrügge, S.; Schott, P.; Weibelzahl, M.; Buhl, H.U.; Fridgen, G.; Schöpf, M.

Fulltext ()

Applied energy 285 (2021), Art. 116370, 13 pp.
ISSN: 0306-2619
ISSN: 1872-9118
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer FIT ()

The first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic led to decreases in electricity demand and a rising share of Renewable Energy Sources in various countries. In Germany, the average proportion of net electricity generation via Renewable Energy Sources rose above 55 % in the first half of 2020, as compared to 47 % for the same period in 2019. Given these altered circumstances, in this paper we analyze how the German and other European electricity systems behaved during the COVID-19 pandemic. We use data visualization and descriptive statistics to evaluate common figures for electricity systems and markets, comparing developments during the COVID-19 pandemic with those of previous years. Our evaluation reveals noticeable changes in electricity consumption, generation, prices, and imports/exports. However, concerning grid stability and ancillary services, we do not observe any irregularities. Discussing the role of various flexibility options during the COVID-19 pandemic, a relatively higher grid capacity resulting from a decreased electricity consumption, in particular, may have contributed to grid stability.