With the shutdown of nuclear power plants, a significant portion of the current generation in Baden-Württemberg will disappear by 2022; in 2013, there was still about a third. In addition, the gross power generation from conventional coal-fired power plants will be reduced, as some of them will be dropped from the grid in the near future for reasons of age. This gap can only be partially closed by the new conventional power plants in Karlsruhe and Mannheim and the expansion of renewable energies. Baden-Württemberg, therefore, will continue to rely on electricity imports in the future.
In order to transport the inexpensive and renewable wind power from the north of Germany to Baden-Württemberg in particular, the expansion of the transmission grid is essential. Baden-Württemberg relies on a coordinated grid expansion in order to
- transport excess wind power from northern Germany to the load centres in southern Germany over high-voltage lines,
- compensate flexibly for fluctuating renewable energy generation by expanding the distribution grids and counteracting grid bottlenecks,
- improve performance especially in the distribution grids, so that the grid capacities can keep pace with the expansion of renewable energies.
Since our generation of electricity is becoming decentralized and more and more susceptible to the fluctuations of wind and sun, the distribution grids that bring power to the consumer must be converted to smart grids wherever possible.
Smart grids must intelligently connect and link electricity generators, grid operators, storage and customers by means of modern information and communication technologies. They help to match electricity generation and usage, and they contribute to load management by making the demand for electricity flexible.
From the perspective of Baden-Württemberg, smart grids are an essential element in the sustainable, resource-saving, and efficient supply of energy. They make energy turnabouts cheaper, contribute to the security of supply, and reduce the grid expansion necessary for the energy turnabout.
In Baden-Württemberg, not only do we have good financial resources, but also a group of players that, thanks to their knowledge and experience, are able to design and implement all of the elements necessary for the smart grid. The smart grid activities in Baden-Württemberg are concentrated in the smart grid platform Baden-Württemberg e. V.
With smart grids, Baden-Württemberg is able not only to tap a new field of technology in global competition, but also added value and jobs.