Gasgrid Finland has received several inquiries from market participants about how gas distribution is operated in gas supply disruption of varying severities, and which are the obligations of each party in handling the situation. Gasgrid Finland’s transmission platform is at the moment running normally and there are no planned maintenance works, which would affect on the gas transmission capacity, coming in the near future. Gasgrid Finland is neither aware of signs of any gas transmission disruptions in Finland.
Gasgrid Finland encourages all market participants, as part of their normal continuity management, to estimate their own actions and to have conversations with gas suppliers about the continuity of gas deliveries in various disruption situations. To support that, the responsibilities, and obligations of different market participants in different degrees of disruption through the roles of the market model are described below.
Transmission system operator with the system responsibility, Gasgrid Finland
According to system responsibility, Gasgrid Finland is responsible for the Finnish gas system balancing both commercially and physically. Gasgrid Finland’s role is to maintain market-based prerequisites and Gasgrid Finland has no possibility to steer the gas deliveries against the market parties’ actions even in an exceptional situation.
Gasgrid Finland confirms, in accordance with normal practice, the nominations of the system’s interconnectionpoints only to the extent when it receives confirmation from the gas importer and the supplier.
In a gas transmission disruption Gasgrid Finland is following the gas consumption compared to Imatra’s and Balticconnector’s accepted nominations. If the market isn’t balanced enough by the market participants’ own actions, Gasgrid Finland will start measures to control the gas usage. The first action is commercial steering, where the price of the balancing gas is adjusted with trades in Get Baltic’s gas exchange. By doing this, Gasgrid Finland is steering the balance groups to either acquire more gas or to reduce the gas usage.
In a severe disruption in gas transmission, where the commercial steering is insufficient, or in a situation where Gasgrid Finland doesn’t have the capability to transmit balance gas to the market due to the inflexibility of available supply sources, Gasgrid Finland gives a system responsible’s order to the balance responsible parties to stay in their balance. In this case the commercial market and the physical system is balanced by steering the consumption on a level which is in line with the amount of gas transmitted to the country. Neither in this case will Gasgrid Finland eliminate the commercial elements of the market functions – the parties which have gas are able to either use it or sell it with OTC or in gas exchange to other shippers or traders. Gasgrid Finland is monitoring the market operations and, if needed, will restrict the physical deliveries to locations where the balance responsible party has not confirmed the deliveries.
The National Emergency Supply Agency has in exceptional circumstances the possibility to permit the operators to start using reserve fuels in accordance with the act on obligatory storage to protect protected customers in accordance with the security of supply regulation. The possible utilization of LNG based solutions from Gasgrid Finland’s location in Mäntsälä is technically possible only when the pressure level in the transmission system has dropped under 10 barg. Gasgrid Finland secures the protected customers’ gas transmission from the pipeline storage until the system pressure level allows to start transmitting LNG based gas to the transmission system. In this case Gasgrid Finland will negotiate with the parties who are responsible for securing gas deliveries for the protected customers on how the usage of the gas from the pipeline storage is commercially compensated to Gasgrid Finland.
Gasgrid Finland is sharing market insights for example about gas storage capacity in ENTSOG transparency platform. Possible changes are also published as urgent market messages according to REMIT regulations.
Balance responsible parties
The balance responsible parties are responsible to the system operator for the operations of their own balance group.
During a significant disruption in gas transmission Gasgrid Finland may have to give the balance responsible parties an order to stay in their balance. In practice this means that the balance group’s gas usage volume in Gas Day may only be as high as the amount of gas the group has acquired for the same period of time. The balance group should in this case estimate the continuity of the gas transmission in their group in relation to the available amount of gas energy. Gasgrid Finland needs to be informed on the continuity of gas transmission without a delay. The information shared to Gasgrid Finland needs to contain end user specific, and in distribution system the retailer specific breakdown, on how the balance group will handle the gas transmission in their group.
If Gasgrid Finland is forced to order the balance groups to stay in their balance, the distribution system’s retailers must estimate their gas deliveries based on the information from balance responsible parties and shippers about their own gas availability. The retailers must inform Gasgrid Finland and the concerned distribution network operator of the continuity of supply for each end user.
The distribution system operators
If Gasgrid Finland is forced to order the balance groups to stay in their balance, the distribution system operators must increase their readiness to physically restrict the gas distribution to single end users which don’t have confirmed delivery information, if needed.
Janne Grönlund, Senior Vice President, Transmission Platform
+358 40 036 8825
Esa Hallivuori, Vice President, Head of Gas Market Unit
+358 40 581 5027