Nuclear Power

19 Jan 2023

French Nuclear Fleet Failure, Drought and War to Blame for Record Power Prices in 2022

19 Jan 2023  by   

Last year Europe saw very high levels of wholesale power prices, driven by gas prices that repeatedly broke all-time high records since the start of the Ukraine war.

This was the standout highlight from the latest report on the European energy market from data analyst EnAppSys. The report also points to issues within France’s nuclear fleet and droughts reducing hydropower output as key factors impacting power prices in 2022.

Title Transfer Facility (TTF) prices in the Netherlands – a virtual trading point for natural gas in this country – reached an unprecedented high of €308.18/MWh in August due to the impact of the war in Ukraine, widespread reductions in availability of the French nuclear fleet, and droughts which reduced hydropower output across multiple regions including Norway.

The issues with the French nuclear fleet resulted in France becoming a primary importer of power during various periods of 2022. This reversed usual trends as this country has historically been one of the largest exporters of power in Europe.

Wholesale prices started dropping towards the end of the year once large volumes of gas were stored in preparation for winter. A warm autumn contributed to the drop in prices and for a short period there was an oversupply of gas, with liquid nitrogen gas (LNG) tankers waiting offshore to be offloaded, while storage was filled to its limits.

Sweden became the largest exporter in Europe, exporting 33TWh across the year. Denmark and Finland received the largest share of these exports.


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