Track electricity consumption and production in real time

The electricity shortage did not finally hit France last winter.

Track electricity consumption and production in real time

The electricity shortage did not finally hit France last winter. Can we expect new fears for winter 2023-2024? Follow the electricity production and consumption in the country in real time in our dashboard...

Can electricity consumption and production in the country really drop off to the point of causing blackouts during the winter? For several months in the winter of 2022-2023, France found itself in chronic deficit, which forced it to import electricity almost every day from Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom and even the Netherlands. Spain, Switzerland or Italy.

The situation has nevertheless remained under control, thanks to imports, but also to a drastic drop in electricity consumption in France, of the order of -9% according to the report for winter 2022-2023 drawn up by RTE on March 16, 2023 . Electricity transmission network (RTE), responsible for transporting electricity in France, also provides via the Eco2Mix platform valuable data, updated in real time, which makes it possible to take stock of the electricity situation of the country.

PRECISION: the data of the day and the day before are accumulations carried out by our care since the beginning of the day from the "real time" data made available on Data.gouv by the Open Data Networks Energies (ODRÉ), platform bringing together data from GRTgaz, RTE, Teréga and several other key organizations in the energy sector in France. Averages for the same date over the last 5 years are calculated using "consolidated" data from 2017 to 2021.

PRECISION: on this graph as on the following two, the data of the day (red curve and blue curve) are "real time" data established at quarter-hour intervals by the ODRÉ and available on Data.gouv. The averages for the last 5 years have been calculated by us from "consolidated" data also available on Data.gouv.

The last curves above show it: if France could fear the shortage and the power cuts this winter, it is primarily because of the production and not of the consumption of energy in the country. On the consumption side, the French will have been more economical at the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023 than in recent years, as confirmed by RTE in several reports, in particular in its weekly summary on electricity consumption. Compared to recent years (excluding Covid), the drop would be around 9, one point short of the 10% target set by Emmanuel Macron at the start of the school year in September to avoid the worst.

On the other hand, production has been disrupted since the summer of 2022 by major maintenance operations in French nuclear power plants, coupled with corrosion problems detected on pipes. 32 of the 56 reactors managed by EDF were shut down in August 2022. By gradually restarting many of them, the energy supplier increased the number of grid-connected units to 40 and production to 39 gigawatts ( GW) in early December, then to 44 reactors for 45 GW in early January out of a total capacity of 61 GW.

This acceleration of the restart of nuclear reactors, combined with the drop in electricity consumption and import capacities deemed "satisfactory", nevertheless made it possible from mid-December to envisage winter 2022-2023 with a little more of optimism, and ultimately to avoid any alert, as RTE again concluded in its winter 2022-2023 report.