Mise à jour : 10 septembre 2012 (Rédaction initiale : 2 juillet 2012 )

Analyses Sectorielles

The Belgian regulator of energy released a study on 21 June 2012, which considers that the projections of the Belgian Administration in the production of energy are inaccurate.



Context and Summary

© thejournalofregulation

To read the public report, in the non-confidential version, click here.

By a 14 pages text, called "study" the Commission for Electricity and Gas Regulation, Belgian energy regulator, takes a position on the forecasts of energy production that the Belgian government has published under its generating facilities, including nuclear, through the work of his administration, an interim report of the "SPF Economie" ( the Federal Public Service Economy).

The regulator began by saying that, in doing so, it is in its general authority to review the organisation of the electricity market (article 23 of the Act of 29 April 1999) and not in application of theAct of 31 January 2003 specialty devoted to the release of nuclear energy. Indeed, the regulator observed immediately after it received the administrative report may 7, 2012 by e-mail, without being asked no notice or note.

And again the regulator published a "study" that critical insensitively assessments made by the services of the Government. The tone and the atmosphere are given...In his study, the regulator pretends to be surprised that the report be referred as "confidential", while the data are not. It regrets it regarding the principle transparency.

It recalled that the government must, by law, ensure security of supply. For this, it must conduct long term studies; however, it notes that the report concerns only the short-term. Follows a series of sharp criticisms of the methodology, the regulator considers inadequate, hence it concludes that it "doubt" about the usefulness of the survey compared to a simple calculation of probability.

About the taking into consideration of evolution of demand of electricity, the regulator believes the methods for capture are arbitrary. Regarding the description of generating facilities the regulator notes that it believes to be mistakes. It also criticized authors of the report for not having paid enough attention to import and export, while the situation in Belgium in Europe prompts it. Thus, the choice made by the authors of the administrative report on the deterministic model rather than a probabilistic model not only adds nothing, in the best case, but most often leads to errors or approximations, as regulator.

On the issue of generating facilities, the regulator regrets that other options that the closure of nuclear units has not been considered. It reports that it, has in a previous study, proposed and developed alternative options. In unfamiliar terms, this is called a "combing" in good standing.

The regulator clears the account to the government both in substance and form. It bypasses fact that the government did not ask its advice in terms phase out nuclear power, which involves the closure of plants, believing it can do any study on the electricity market, there including any study "responsive" to a study of the administration, including a study that focuses on the nuclear issue, since it is related to the electricity market.

Everything is in everything. Legally, it is doubtful, but the public opinion can only endorse such a movement of the regulator and the subject the power of speech is taken, more than it is offered. Besides on the form, the regulator criticized the administration to send, by e-mail, a report saying that it would send a summary of the latest consultations.

No, the regulator wants to be involved! Treat a regulator in this way; it is from the government being exposed to improper handling by the first of its powers of law or fact, such a government study, in which irony, denunciation of the opacity and the veiled accusation of technical incompetence, break through to each row. In regulated systems, regulator is in the center, even in the energy system, even if it is nuclear.

Not that the regulator has to decide: it was not the last word, so the new Japanese nuclear regulator remains in the executive, but he must always speak. Otherwise, it must be paid. Thus, in the presentation that the (CREG - the Commission for Electricity and Gas Regulation) made June 29, 2012 of its report, it considered openly that the projections were "unrealistic" in that they relied on renewable energy to supplement the shutdown of nuclear power three plants.

The regulator particularly regret that the government continues not to listen to his expertise, saying that the Belgian energy dependence is growing, and that if one were to follow the recommendations of this report, and criticized, the situation would be even more dark. Do not get upset regulators, in arm wrestling, they win more often...

Brief commentary

The Belgian Government made establishing by one of its research services a report on the means for electricity, for the period 2012-2027, to make recommendations. This results in projections, and the recommendation of closure of three nuclear power plants. The administrative service sent May 7, 2012 by e-mail the intermediate report to the Belgian regulator of energy (CREG - the Commission for Electricity and Gas Regulation) without asking for its opinion, for simple information. In response, the regulator published a study of 21 June 2012, which strongly criticizes the administrative report as well in its methodology (deterministic) than in its assessment of the production capacity, in its recommendations. The regulator believes it can do, since it is competent to conduct studies for everything concerning the electricity market.

votre commentaire