One aspect of EU energy policy is to link the energy infrastructure of EU countries. The strategy for this is set out in the form of guidelines, inRegulation (EU) No 347/2013, the so-called ‘TEN-E Regulation’ (consolidated version of 31/3/2020).
Interconnected network of Continental Europe (2019), ENTSOE
The EU priorities corridors
Enter the Map
North Seas offshore grid (NSOG)
North Sea region countries, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden and before UK have agreed to further strengthen their energy cooperation, to improve conditions for the development of offshore wind energy in order to ensure a sustainable, secure and affordable energy supply in the area. The initiative focuses on building of missing electricity links, allow more trading of energy and further integration of energy markets and reinforcing regional cooperation which will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance security of supply in the region.
By its very nature and location, the project was included in the European MSP Platform, the Maritime Spatial Platform, defined in the EU Directive on MSP. MPS is a process that brings together multiple users of the ocean – including energy, industry, government, conservation and recreation – to make informed and coordinated decisions about how to use marine resources sustainably.
In Europe, the 22 coastal Member States are obliged under the MSP Directive to develop a national maritime spatial plan at the latest by 31 March 2021, with a minimum review period of 10 years. The MSP Directive was adopted in 2014 and establishes a framework for MSP, ‘aimed at promoting the sustainable growth of maritime economies, the sustainable development of marine areas and the sustainable use of marine resources. The EU MSP Platform is a service for Member States to share relevant knowledge and experiences, designed to offer support with the implementation of MSP. It is funded by the EC Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE) through the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF).
North-South electricity interconnections in Western Europe (‘NSI West Electricity’)
Member States concerned: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Malta, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom. Interconnections between Member States of the region and with the Mediterranean area including the Iberian peninsula, notably to integrate electricity from renewable energy sources and reinforce internal grid infrastructures to foster market integration in the region.
North-South electricity interconnections in Central Eastern and South Eastern Europe (‘NSI East Electricity’)
Member States concerned: Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia ( 5 ), Czech Republic, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia. Interconnections and internal lines in North-South and East-West directions to complete the internal market and integrate generation from renewable energy sources.
Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan in electricity (‘BEMIP Electricity’)
Member States concerned: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden. Interconnections between Member States in the Baltic region and reinforcing internal grid infrastructures accordingly, to end isolation of the Baltic States and to foster market integration inter alia by working towards the integration of renewable energy in the region.
Priority Thematic Areas
Smart grids deployment: adoption of smart grid technologies across the Union to efficiently integrate the behaviour and actions of all users connected to the electricity network, in particular the generation of large amounts of electricity from renewable or distributed energy sources and demand response by consumers.Member States concerned: all.
Electricity highways: it concerns all Member States. First electricity highways by 2020, in view of building an electricity highways system across the Union that is capable of:
accommodating ever-increasing wind surplus generation in and around the Northern and Baltic Seas and increasing renewable generation in the East and South of Europe and also North Africa;
connecting these new generation hubs with major storage capacities in the Nordic countries, the Alps and other regions with major consumption centres; and
coping with an increasingly variable and decentralised electricity supply and flexible electricity demand.
Smart grids deployment: increase deployment of smart grids to help integrate renewable energy and allow consumers to better regulate their energy consumption
Electricity highways: construction of electricity highways – large grids that allow electricity to be transported over long distances across Europe (e.g. from wind farms in the North and Baltic Seas to storage facilities in Scandinavia and the Alps)
To achieve its climate and energy goals, Europe needs to improve cross-border electricity interconnections. Reliable connections with neighboring countries also lower the risk of electricity blackouts, reduce the need to build new power plants, and make it easier to manage variable renewable power sources like solar and wind. In October 2014, the European Council called for all EU countries to achieve electricity interconnection of at least 10% of their installed production capacity by 2020.