Sweden Starts Oil-Fired Plant to Help Poland Avoid Outages
(Bloomberg) -- Sweden started an oil-fired reserve power plant after Poland said it needed help from its neighbors to meet soaring electricity demand as freezing weather spread across Europe.
The plant in Karlshamn, which is part of a winter reserve, was ordered to start after Poland asked for assistance to cover a deficit of as much as 1,700 megawatts for some hours on Monday, the Swedish grid manager said in a statement. The two countries are connected by a 600-megawatt direct link.
“Even if Sweden has relatively high consumption on Monday, it will be possible to support Poland,” Pontus de Mare, head of operations at Svenska Kraftnat, said in the statement.
System operators in Germany, Lithuania and Ukraine also answered the call for emergency assistance, Polish grid manager PSE said by email. The shortage was due to low wind and “emergency and repair shutdowns of number of thermal generating units,” it said.
Polish utility Polska Grupa Energetyczna SA halted one of its 905-megawatt coal generation units in Opole at midnight on Monday until Dec. 23, according to a filing with Entsoe, Europe’s association of grid operators. A 566-megawatt coal unit at the Kozienice plant also remained offline after an unplanned halt at the weekend.
Polish power prices rose to 240.59 euros ($272) per megawatt-hours for Monday, the highest since the February launch of its day-ahead market on the Nord Pool exchange, with temperatures in Warsaw expected to fall to -9 degrees Celsius this week. Prices in the south of Sweden, where the Karlshamn plant is located, surged to a record 290.06 euros. Stockholm will see temperatures as low as -15 celsius this week.
The Uniper SE-operated plant was due to produce 330 megawatts between 5 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Monday, according to a filing with Nord Pool.
Europe’s energy crunch saw the Karlshamn facility -- usually the last reserve in the Swedish power system -- already pressed into service in September after record power prices spilled over into Scandinavia.
©2021 Bloomberg L.P.