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Consistent and robust delimitation of price zones under uncertainty with an application to Central Western Europe

Tim Felling and Christoph Weber

Energy Economics, 2018, vol. 75, issue C, 583-601

Abstract: New and alternative delimitations of price zones for Central Western Europe (CWE) might constitute a mid-term solution to cope with the increasing congestion in the electricity transmission grids. The significantly growing infeed from renewable energy sources puts more and more pressure on the grid and emphasizes the need for improved congestion management. Thus, a new delimitation of price zones is frequently considered in current discussions and research. The present paper applies a novel hierarchical cluster algorithm that clusters locational marginal prices and weights nodes depending on their demand- and supply situation to identify possible new price zone configurations (PZCs). The algorithm is applied in a scenario analysis of six scenarios reflecting main drivers that influence the future development of European Electricity markets in line with the trilemma of energy policy targets. Robustness of the new configuration is an important criterion for price zone configurations according to the European Guideline on Capacity Allocation and Congestion Management (CACM). Therefore, a robust price zone configuration is computed taking into account all the six individual scenarios. Results show that shape, size and price variations of price zones on the one hand strongly depend on the individual scenario. On the other hand, the identified robust configuration is shown to outperform other configurations, particularly also the current price zone configuration in CWE.

Keywords: Cluster analysis; Electricity market design; Nodal pricing; Zonal pricing; Congestion management; Price zone configuration; Bidding zone configuration (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C38 C61 D47 L51 Q41 Q48 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Energy Economics is currently edited by R. S. J. Tol, Beng Ang, Lance Bachmeier, Perry Sadorsky, Ugur Soytas and J. P. Weyant

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