Power system

Finland’s electricity consumption rose 0.5 (3.2) per cent on the previous year and totalled 85.5 (85.1) terawatt hours in 2017. Fingrid transmitted a total of 66.2 (68.5) TWh of electricity in its grid, representing 75.5 (77.3) per cent of the transmission volume in Finland (consumption and inter-TSO).

The electricity import and production capacity was sufficient to cover the peak consumption during the year. According to our measurements, electricity consumption peaked at 14,300 megawatts on 5 January 2017 between 5 and 6 p.m. During that peak consumption hour, Finland generated 10,000 megawatts of electricity and the remaining electricity was imported from neighbouring countries. On the same day, a record-high 4,750 megawatts of electricity was imported.

The market mechanism steers electricity movements efficiently. Price signals steer electricity consumption and production, and electricity is imported in an amount corresponding to consumption, as steered by the markets. The import capacity from Russia and Sweden was commercially almost fully exploited during the peak consumption hour, but the commercially available import capacity from Estonia amounted to around 370 MW. Domestic combined heat and power plants and hydro power plants still had available capacity during the periods of peak consumption. Sufficient electricity supply was thus not in jeopardy in Finland during the peak consumption situations and the power system operated reliably during that time too. Peak-load capacity was not used during the period of peak consumption.

In 2017, electricity transmissions between Finland and Sweden consisted mostly of large imports to Finland. In the early part of the year, the electricity transmission between Finland and Estonia was dominated by exports from Finland to Estonia, and towards the end of the year, imports from Estonia to Finland were slightly dominant. The transmission was steered by the markets and the weekly transmission direction varied according to the current market situation. Electricity imports from Russia to Finland remained on the previous year’s level. There were major intraday variations in import volumes, however.

The maximum transmission capacity was available almost throughout the year, with the exception of the annual maintenance work carried out at the Vyborg DC station and on the Russian grid. No export capacity to Russia was available in June due to preplanned maintenance work.  Otherwise, the planned maintenance shut-downs of transmission connections between Estonia, Sweden and Russia were on a normal level in 2017.

Countertrade 1–12/17 1–12/16 10–12/17 10–12/16
Countertrade between Finland and Sweden, €M

0.4

2.5

0.1

0.3

Countertrade between Finland and Estonia, €M

0.1

0.1

0.0

0.0

Countertrade between Finland’s internal connections, €M

1.3

1.2

0.0

0.3

Total countertrade, €M

1.8

3.9

0.1

0.6

Our mission is to supply the electricity generated by power plants that are connected to the grid to our customers reliably and in a state of high quality. We continuously monitor the reliability of electricity transmission. As in the previous year, our transmission reliability rate remained at an excellent level during the year under review and was 99.9997 (99.9999) per cent.  An outage in a connection point in the grid caused by a disturbance in Fingrid’s electricity network lasted an average of 2.2 (1.4) minutes, which is clearly shorter than the ten-year average of 3.3 minutes. The cost of the disturbances (regulatory outage costs) was EUR 2.8 (3.1) million and, including the quick reconnections, EUR 5.0 million. The reliability of direct-current connections was on a record-high level in 2017. There were only five disturbances in Fingrid’s four direct-current connections, the total duration of which was only around 16 hours. The total availability of the connections also reached its highest level in more than ten years. Thanks to record-high reliability and availability, countertrade costs remained at approximately EUR 100,000.  As in 2016, disturbances in direct-current connections did not have any impact on the transmission capacity available to the electricity market. 

The most significant single disturbance took place in December 2017 at the Porvoo-Ahvenkoski 110-kilovolt power line, when abundant snow damaged the tower structure and the lightning conductor.

The importance of our electricity transmission reliability is illustrated by the fact that the cost of a nationwide major disturbance to customers and society at large would be in the region of EUR 100 million for each hour of outage.

Countertrade costs totalled EUR 1.8 (3.9) million. Countertrade refers to special adjustments made to manage electricity transmission which are used to eliminate short-term bottlenecks i.e. areas where electricity transmission is congested from the grid. Fingrid guarantees the cross-border transmission it has confirmed by carrying out countertrades, i.e. purchasing and selling electricity, up until the end of the 24-hour usage period. The need for countertrade can arise from, for example, a power outage or disruption in a power plant or in the grid.

Transmission outages in connection with investment projects took place in all of Finland, particularly in Espoo, Alajärvi, Koria, Keminmaa and Vanaja. The outages are challenging and require careful advance planning and good cooperation with our customers. The outages were handled successfully.

Reserves required to maintain the power balance of the power system were procured from Finland, the other Nordic countries, Estonia and Russia. The availability of reserves was good, but weakened during the spring floods, when the adjustability of hydro power plants could not be utilised as it normally can. The costs of reserves remained clearly below the budgeted level. The supply of reserves has increased due to new actors and increasing demand-side management, in particular. The sales of frequency-controlled reserves to Sweden continued to grow compared to the previous years, and sales volumes were many times higher than the purchase volumes. Nordic transmission system operators continued using the automatic frequency restoration reserve to restore the deteriorated frequency quality. A maximum reserve of 300 megawatts, of which Fingrid’s share was up to 70 megawatts, was maintained for the selected hours.

The volume of transmission losses in the Finnish grid decreased from the previous year and was 1.2 (1.3) terawatt hours. This is 1.4 (1.4) per cent of the total volume of transmitted electricity. The decrease in transmission losses can be attributed to the decline in ITC volumes from the previous year. The annual variation of losses is affected by the Nordic electricity production situation, such as sufficiency of hydropower.

 

Power system operation 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013
Electricity consumption in Finland, TWh 85,5

85,1

82,5 83,4 84,0
Fingrids transmission volume, TWh 66,2 68,5 67,9 67,1 64,6
Fingrid's loss power volume, TWh 1,2 1,3 1,4 1,3 1,1
Electricity transmission Finland–Sweden          
Exports to Sweden, TWh 0,4 0,3 0,2 0,15 0,7
Imports from Sweden, TWh 15,6 15,7 17,8 18,1 12,8
Electricity transmission Finland–Estonia          
Exports to Estonia, TWh 1,7 3,1 5 3,6 1,6
Imports from Estonia, TWh 0,9 0,7 0,05 0,05      0,5
Electricity transmission Finland–Norway               
Exports to Norway, TWh   0,1 0,1 0,1 0,1
Imports from Norway, TWh 0,3 0,2 0,1 0,1  
Electricity transmission Finland–Russia          
Exports to Russia, TWh     0,2    
Imports from Russia, TWh 5,8 5,9 3,9 3,4 4,7

Key events of 2017

Nordic operational planning office in Copenhagen

Fingrid prepares for the connection of Olkiluoto 3 to the national grid

Ideas for power system development from Hackathon

Jäätyvä 2017 exercise highlighted co-operation in a crisis situation

Geomagnetic storm did not affect the grid