Winter situation 2015 / 2016
In the autumn of 2015 it became apparent that the energy and grid situation in winter could become strained. Energy reserves in Switzerland were scarce at that point due to a series of specific circumstances:
- Due to the dry weather in summer and autumn the rivers were carrying significantly less water compared to the long-term average, which affected electricity generation from hydroelectric power plants.
- The level of the reservoirs was found to be below average based on a long-term comparison.
- The nuclear power plants Beznau 1 and 2 were both out of service. As a result, a feed-in of 720 MW into the 220-kV grid was lacking in northern Switzerland.
The lack of constant energy from hydroelectric and nuclear power had to be compensated for with other types of generation, particularly from storage power plants and imports. Since the capacity for the transformation from 380 kV to 220 kV is limited, imports were only usable to a limited extent to compensate for the lack of constant energy.
The «Winter 2015-2016 Report» highlights the difficult initial situation, the steps taken to ease the pressure and the measures taken to avoid a recurrence of it in future. The working group «Responsibility for the Security of the Electricity Supply» documented the results of its work in the report of the same name.