Everyone's efforts to control French energy consumption seem to have paid off.
Emmanuelle Wargon, the director of the Energy Regulation Commission (CRE), confirmed this Wednesday morning on France Inter that the drop in electricity consumption eliminated the risk of load shedding, therefore cuts, until mid-January.
“Until January 15, we know that we have no difficulty,” she assured France Inter.
“The call for sobriety has really been heard,” assured the former Minister of Housing.
Over the last four weeks, the fall in electricity consumption is minus 9%, whereas the objective of the government and network managers was around 10%.
"It's still a bit early to say what will happen" at the end of January or in February, but the energy sobriety efforts, coupled with the gradual return to service of nuclear reactors, as well as the absence too long cold spells mean that "we're not too bad".
Emmanuelle Wargon (@EmmWargon), President of the Energy Regulation Commission: "It's true that the call for sobriety has really been heard. Over the last 4 months, we have been at -9% energy consumption electricity, for businesses and families"#le7930inter pic.twitter.com/DT1igR16hl
– France Inter (@franceinter) December 28, 2022
Three weeks ago, the Cattenom 4 reactors in Lorraine, Bugey 3 near Grenoble and Dampierre 3 in Loiret resumed production, allowing the French electricity network to operate with 40 reactors connected out of 56. had never been so low,” admitted Wargon, for whom “the whole issue is how fast it goes up.
The objective is to reach 50 GW, essential production to get through the winter.
We are at 40, we should reach 45 in January, 50 are probably achievable, EDF maintenance teams are working hard, ”she added.
The French nuclear fleet, when it is operating at full capacity, has a maximum installed power of more than 61 GW.
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However, despite these sixteen reactors still shut down, "France exports the equivalent of 8.7 GW of power and imports 4.6, so it is a net exporter, that had not happened for a long time", welcomed Emmanuelle Wargon.
This ability to reduce France's external energy needs can only lead to cost control.
Despite this, "in 2023 prices will increase by 15%", after being frozen in 2022 by the tariff shield.
Without this shield, the price of gas would have been “doubled”, according to CRE calculations.
“In electricity, it's of the same order, roughly doubled.
The government makes 15%, so there is a big collective effort, ”she admitted without being able to say if the government was going to decide on the extension of the shield next June.