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Electricity Network Development Plan 2024 and Offshore Network Development Plan 2024 confirmed and Environmental Report published

Jochen Homann: "63 of the 92 measures proposed are necessary"

Year of issue 2015
date of issue 2015.09.04

The Bundesnetzagentur has confirmed the electricity network development plan 2024 today.

"Reliable and long-term grid expansion planning is of critical importance to the Energiewende's success. Through our annual process of re-evaluating the requirements on the basis of the prevailing conditions, we are ensuring that the planning of the expansion measures required in the transmission system is solid and dependable", explains Jochen Homann, Bundesnetzagentur President.

Homann further explains: "We only confirmed measures that, according to our calculations, are absolutely necessary for the coming years. This also incorporated all of the opinions that were expressed in the over 34,000 comments we received in the consultation process. Out of the 92 measures for the transmission system that were proposed by the transmission system operators (TSOs) we were able to confirm 63. In addition, we approved three of the seven proposed offshore connections."

The projects confirmed in the 2024 network development plan for electricity comprise some 3,050 kilometres of existing lines to be reinforced or optimised and around 2,750 kilometres of new lines.

In its considerations, the Bundesnetzagentur assumed a slower expansion of offshore wind energy generation and feed-in restrictions on land, as was called for in the consultation process. Both actions lead to a reduction in network expansion requirements. The fact that the total number of kilometres and measures has nevertheless increased compared to previous network development plans can be attributed to the ongoing expansion of renewable energy sources.

The result of the coalition talks of 1 July 2015 was also incorporated into the review. Jochen Homann, Bundesnetzagentur President, explains: "The proposal to run the south-eastern DC passage to Isar/Landshut is, in our opinion, suitable from an electrical engineering perspective under the condition that the regional three-phase power system between Ottenhofen und Oberbachern is strengthened."

However, the Bundesnetzagentur may only review the network-related aspects anchored in legislation as relevant in the context of assessing energy supply requirements. In light of this, the Bundesnetzagentur confirmed measure D18, which was proposed by the TSOs and runs from Wolmirstedt to Gundremmingen. The legislator is free to consider additional aspects or weigh certain aspects differently when determining binding grid expansion requirements in the Federal Requirements Plan Act. The legislator may therefore consider as preferable the alternative measure that runs from Wolmirstedt to Isar/Landshut, including the complementary measure for the three-phase power system.

The revised environmental report was published together with the network development plans. This report investigates, describes and evaluates the expected environmental impacts of the measures which have been considered necessary by the Bundesnetzagentur for the security of energy supply. Compared to last year, this year's environmental report additionally reviews the environmental impact of laying underground cable for a larger number of projects. Thus an assessment of the environmental impact of all HVDC lines was carried out for both the underground and the overhead variations of the lines.

The processes of identifying the requirements for establishing the extra-high voltage network and drawing up the environmental report were accompanied by an eight-week consultation period during which the public had the opportunity to have a say on the proposed measures. More than 34,211 responses were received, and the comments were taken into account in the Bundesnetzagentur's final assessment. The content of all of the comments was recorded, evaluated and their arguments were acknowledged in the decision-making process.

A large share of the comments concerned specific projects, especially the grid expansion projects for the south-eastern DC passage, SuedLink, Ultranet and the project running from Raitersaich to Altheim (measures M350 and M54). The majority of comments on the environmental report expressed concerns about electric and magnetic fields, aspects of landscape conservation and the possible impact of new electricity lines on bird conservation. Additionally, the topic of the possible fall in value of property and land caused by electricity grid expansion was also frequently addressed.

Complete documentation and further information can be found on the Bundesnetzagentur’s grid expansion website at www.netzausbau.de/2024-nep-ub . The comments from the consultation process are published under: www.netzausbau.de/2024-archiv. Bundesnetzagentur videos take a look at the topics that the network development plan deals with and the reasoning behind it. They can be viewed on YouTube at: www.youtube.de/netzausbau.

Press release (pdf / 144 KB)