News / Gas market news 4

Gas market news 4

Compared to the previous year, 2021 has got off to a wintry start, which was clearly reflected in greater use of gas during the first two months. New projects, relating among other things to the guarantee of origin system and connection service agreements, have been launched on the market development front. Regarding regional market development, we have worked with the Baltic Transmission System Operators to draw up a roadmap for regional market development. Read more about these and other topical gas market news in the attached news package.

Content:

  • The start of 2021 was good for gas use compared to a year earlier
  • Gasgrid Finland has launched a connection service agreement update project – further information by the end of March
  • Elering has published UMMs and a release concerning compressor stations and Balticconnector capacity
  • Development of the guarantee of origin system
  • Second correction round of balance settlement errors to take place in April
  • Customer satisfaction survey results and follow-up measures
  • Hamina LNG Oy has published a release about the schedule for the commercial commissioning of the Hamina LNG terminal
  • Gasgrid Finland and the Baltic Transmission System Operators organised a Regional Market Development Council Webinar – the materials are available on our website

The start of 2021 was very good for gas use compared to a year earlier

As far as gas use is concerned, 2021 has got off to a brisk start and gas consumption in Finland has been significantly higher than a year earlier, particularly because of the cold first two months of the year. Around 3.8 TWh (2020: ~2.6 TWh) of gas was used in January 2021 in Finland and around 3.7 TWh (2020: ~2.4 TWh) in February, making use of around 7.5 TWh for the first two months of the year.

As was the case last year, the Balticconnector utilisation rate has remained very high. During the early part of the year, around 23% of imported gas came via the Balticconnector and Imatra accounted for 77%. In addition to entry points, biogas plants connected to the network inject gas directly into the Finnish natural gas system. There are 6 biogas injection points connected to Finnish gas system out of which 4 are connected to transmission system and 2 are connected to distribution system. Biogas injection represents < 1 % of the gas quantities entered into the Finnish gas system.

Read the gas market data review concerning January and February 2021.

For more information: Mika Myötyri, Development Manager, Gas Market, mika.myotyri@gasgrid.fi

Gasgrid Finland has launched a connection service agreement update project – further information by the end of March

Gasgrid Finland has launched a project to update connection service agreements to align them with new connection service terms and conditions and operating models. In the same context, Gasgrid wants, together with other connections, to update the connection capacity and supply pressure required by the connections to give the Transmission System Operator a correct information of the transmission system capacity need. Proper information on capacity needs drives the planning of Gasgrid’s network.

Gas is supplied to the transmission network end users and to distribution system operators via delivery stations along the transmission network where the volume of gas is measured, and the supply pressure regulated to the level required by the customer. A fall in the pressure will result in a reduction in gas temperature and thus security of supply unless the gas is heated at a station. Technically different models have been implemented to heat the gas, which is usually based on the heat produced by a gas boiler or heat supplied by the customer. Besides thermal energy, a delivery station needs electricity to work to among other things ensure the function of the circulator pumps and the operating capacity of the station’s data transmission equipment.

In September 2020, the Energy Authority confirmed the updated connection service terms and conditions, under which there has been a change in compensation of the costs arising from the use of consumables at gas delivery stations. Under the new connection service terms and conditions, the Energy Authority has made a decision on the costs arising from consumables at delivery stations whereby the Transmission System Operator shall primarily be responsible for these costs. Under earlier practice, the connection was directly responsible for the costs arising from consumables at delivery stations. On the other hand, the Transmission System Operator will charge market participants the costs arising from consumables at delivery stations through the commodity charge in the transmission tariff. The change in treatment of costs arising from consumables will be implemented during 2021, which is why the TSO has increased the commodity charge for 2021 to cover the estimated extra costs incurred by the TSO.

Gasgrid Finland will provide further information about project by the end of March.

Elering has published UMMs and a release concerning compressor stations and Balticconnector capacity

Elering has published an UMM regarding the compressor stations: ”Based on information received from the contractor, the commissioning date communicated for 01.04 will not be possible. Please find a letter published to cover more details here: information related to compressor stations”. Read the release concerning the compressor stations published by Elering.

Elering has published an UMM regarding the Balticconnector capacities: ”Elering and Gasgrid have coordinated the capacity for year 2021 taking into account the uncertainty of the commissioning date in previous UMM. Capacity is published on TSOs homepages and transparency platform. During the normal operation period capacity will be in according with the current infrastructure between 28,4 and 39GWh. The information on commissioning of compressor deadline and new technical capacity will be updated as soon as there is certainty regards the deadline of commissioning.”

Development of the guarantee of origin system

Gasgrid Finland is responsible for maintaining the voluntary biogas certificate system. With the regulations under preparation (in Finnish), Gasgrid will become the registrar of the renewable gas guarantee of origin system. We will provide more information about the development of the system on our website.

Read more about guarantees of origin.

Second correction round of balance settlement errors to take place in April

The Rules for Gas Transmission (chapter 9.5) specify that in conjunction with balance settlement, the Transmission System Operator with system responsibility shall carry out balance settlement correction rounds at specified intervals after the final balance settlement. The second correction round will be carried out for the first time in April 2021. The exact date will be notified later on the front page of the Gasgrid portal. The second correction round will cover the calendar year 1 January 2020 to 1 January 2021.

After the final balance settlement, correction needs can arise for example because of errors in the TSO’s or distribution system operator’s measurements during the final balance settlement or missing/incorrect shipper information at the gas delivery site.

Gas volume corrections can consist of the following components to be billed:

  • Imbalance
  • Capacity overrun
  • Commodity charge
  • Excise duty

More information about the principles of the first balance settlement correction round can be found in the Gas Market Code and Information Exchange Guidelines (chapter 7). The also apply to the second balance settlement correction round in as much that calculation takes into account the final balance settlement and the results of the first correction round.

Customer satisfaction survey results and follow-up measures

We conducted a brief customer satisfaction survey in February for our customers. We used net promoter score (NPS) as well as two qualitative questions to measure satisfaction. The survey was based on the question of willingness to recommend the company concerned. The survey was sent to 248 persons, of which 46 responded. With a confidence level of 90%, the error margin is high, 11%, because of the sample size and small number of responders. It was important for Gasgrid to interpret precisely the verbal assessments between the different grades since these indicate the areas for improvement and strengthening.

The NPS score was 17, which can be considered reasonable willingness to recommend (reasonable/passive willingness to recommend”, slightly lower than the energy industry average, but in line with the familiar level in the industry. Passive recommendation generally means that the customer will not voluntarily “speak well” of a company, but when asked can give a mildly favourable recommendation.

The so-called “monopoly position” could have affected responses, which raised the point that not everyone understood the recommendation question “in the absence of alternatives”. Analysis shows that the aspects bringing the score down most were customers’ experience of the services still needing further development, the slowness at times in accessing the service, the difficult availability of the services and at times muddled customer communication. Feedback has been received and processed, and the Gas Market unit has a number of measures under way or planned during 2021 to improve customer experience.

However, many consider there to have been significant improvements during Gasgrid’s operating history. Most of the respondents considered Gasgrid to be a future driven company with a pro-development approach. The baseline was therefore cautiously positive also with regard to areas for development.

We will continue to use NPS but going forward will also develop other questions. We will measure satisfaction at least once a year and by continuous dialogue through customer contact, meetings, webinars and customer development groups. Our thanks to all survey respondents!

Hamina LNG Oy has published a press release on the schedule for the commercial commissioning of the Hamina LNG terminal

Yesterday, March 4, Hamina LNG Oy published a press release on the planned schedule for the commercial commissioning of the Hamina LNG terminal. Hamina LNG Oy states in its press release that the terminal capacity available for the gas year 2022 (1.10.2021-30.9.2022) will be bookable as of 1 April 2021 and the company will provide more detailed information on the terminal capacity booking procedure later. Gasgrid Finland will inform the market closer to the commercial commissioning date on providing virtual LNG entry capacity through Gasgrid Finland’s system. Currently applicable version 2.0 of the Gas Transmission Rules contains rules for the LNG virtual entry point, e.g. concerning capacity allocation and nominations.

Read more: Hamina LNG Oy release

Gasgrid Finland and the Baltic Transmission System Operators organised a Regional Market Development Council webinar – the materials are available on our website

On February 18, Gasgrid Finland and the Baltic Transmission System Operators organised a Regional Market Development Council webinar on the development of the regional gas market. The webinar presented the results of the Regional Gas Market Development consultation questionnaire and both regional and national development roadmaps. The questionnaire gave TSOs important viewpoints from market participants and the results of the questionnaire were taken into account in planning the roadmaps. Gasgrid thanks all the respondents to the questionnaire.

The TSOs are deepening regional cooperation both in issues related to the gas market and transmission system operation. See the presentation material and video recordings.

For more information: Mika Myötyri, Development Manager, Gas Market, mika.myotyri@gasgrid.fi

Gasgrid Finland Oy is a Finnish state-owned company and transmission system operator with system responsibility. We offer our customers safe, reliable and cost-efficient transmission of gases. We actively develop our transmission platform, services and the gas market in a customer-oriented manner to promote the carbon-neutral energy and raw material system of the future. Find out more: www.gasgrid.fi/

Gasgrid Finland Oy is a Finnish state-owned company and transmission system operator with system responsibility. We offer our customers safe, reliable and cost-efficient transmission of gases. We actively develop our transmission platform, services and the gas market in a customer-oriented manner to promote the carbon-neutral energy and raw material system of the future. Find out more: www.gasgrid.fi/

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