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Disruptions at power plants are published on time more and more often, still room for improvement

When wind turbines or power plants are switched off, less electricity is offered to the market, causing prices to go up. This is important information for other suppliers, traders, and major buyers. That is why all market participants must know this in a timely manner and at the same time. In February 2023, the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) also drew attention to these rules, and has now found that inside information is reported correctly and on time more and more often. However, ACM also sees that, still too often, disruptions of production are not reported on time (or even not at all).

ACM will confront producers that do not publish on time or that do not send clear messages. Over the next few years, ACM will continue to monitor the publishing of inside information, and, in that context, will also look into publishments about gas production and supply. In addition, ACM also calls specific attention to the fact that, according to REMIT requirements, switching off wind turbines in order to provide a safe route for migratory birds must also be reported.

Whenever models predict a large number of migratory birds, offshore wind farms are switched off temporarily in order to provide those birds safe passage. ACM emphasizes the importance thereof. As an increasingly large share of energy production takes place offshore, such disruptions also increasingly affect wholesale markets for electricity. The current operational capacity in the North Sea is 2.5 GW. As soon as wind farm operators receive the instruction from the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK) to switch off their wind turbines because of bird migration, they must publish this information immediately.

Update on REMIT indicators

Three times a year, ACM publishes an update on indicators regarding its regulatory activities under REMIT (Regulation on wholesale Energy Market Integrity and Transparency). The objective of this EU regulation is to improve integrity and transparency on wholesale markets for electricity and natural gas. ACM ensures that market participants comply with the requirement to publish inside information, to register themselves, and to report trade information. ACM also supervises that there is no trade with inside information or market manipulation. In this effort, ACM works together with the Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM). Both ACM and AFM have been granted the power to supervise the wholesale markets for energy.

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