Flexibility options in the distribution grid – Exchange between the US and Germany

Delegation trip to Germany (May 6 - 9, 2019)

The role of distribution grids is evolving. Regulators and distribution grid operators face an array of unprecedented responsibilities and opportunities, associated with the rapid increase of intermittent distributed energy sources, new digital technologies, and demand response.

The United States and Europe face many common questions on the road towards a smarter and more flexible distribution grid: How can we increase grid flexibility and resilience in the most economical way? What are the tradeoffs between digitalization and cybersecurity? How can the costs of grid modernization be allocated amongst stakeholders?

With the goal to better understand and navigate a new reality of grid operation needs, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) invited high level representatives to participate in a transatlantic thought leader exchange. The trip is part of a broader scale effort to strengthen the energy cooperation between our countries, encourage the exchange of ideas, and build energy transition policy expertise.

This knowledge exchange aimed to provide intelligent solutions for distribution grid architecture, rate design, the integration of distributed energy sources, electric vehicles, and demand flexibility.  It offered the opportunity for multi-stakeholder executives to jointly explore avenues towards the grid of the future.


"I learned more than I thought would be possible in the four days of this exchange. The quality of speakers, learning opportunity and organisation of the entire experience is unmatched by anything else I have experienced in a professional development setting of any kind."

Deborah Erwin, Manager Regulatory Policy, Xcel Energy, USA, 2019

"The program was strategically planned to give enough but not too much information, the speakers presented outstanding overviews and engaged in lively discussion during and after their talks, and the tours of energy sites made real the significant progress that Germany has made since launching the Energiewende."

George Crabtree, Director, Joint Center for Energy Storage Research, USA, 2019

"The RENAC study group helped me as a comissioner understad the German Energy Transition and provided ideas for me to make my State GA better."

Timothy Echols, Vice Chairman, Georgia Public Service Commission, USA, 2019


Cecilia Strandberg
Project Director
Tel: +49 (0)30 58 70870 42
Fax: +49 (0)30 58 70870 88
Email: strandberg[at]renac.de





Monday, May 6, 2019

Introduction and Meeting with Government Agencies


09.00 am
Welcome and introduction to the week's program and to the energy dialogue program between Germany and USA
Mr Raffaele Piria, Senior Project Manager, adelphi
Mr. Albrecht Tiedemann, Head of Division, Renewables Academy (RENAC) AG
09.15 am
Welcome by the Director General Thorsten Herdan from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi)
Mr. Thorsten Herdan, Director General, German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi)
09.45 am
Introduction to the German Energiewende with focus on the power system
Ms. Stefanie Schmidt-Lübbert, Deputy Head of Unit, International Energy Cooperation, BMWi
Ms. Isabelle Heitmann, Deputy Head of Unit, Special issue of conventional electricity generation, BMWi
Mr. Adrian Loets, Deputy Head of Unit, Digitalisation of the Energy Transition, BMWi
11.15 am
Coffee / tea break
11.30 am
Role of the regulator
Mr. Florian König, Economic Advisor, Energy Regulation, The Federal Network Agency (BNetzA)
12.30 pm
Lunch break
01.30 pm

A deep dive into the German power system: Germany/EU and the US - A comparison
Mr. Raffaele Piria, Senior Project Manager, adelpi

Wholesale markets, power mix, system security
Mr. Frank Peter, Deputy Executive Director and Head of Team Germany, Agora Energiewende

Distribution grids / final consumers
Mr. Andreas Jahn, Senior Associate, The Regulatory Assistance Project

03.30 pm
Presentation of delegaton trip agenda for the week
Ms. Cecilia Strandberg, Project Director, Renewables Academy (RENAC) AG
06.30 pm
Welcome Dinner

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Stakeholder Meetings


09.00 amMeeting and site visit: TSO 50Hertz
Dr. Dirk Biermann, CMO, 50Hertz
11:30 amNew utility business models in the context of the Energiewende
Dr. Jörg Jasper, Group Expert, Energy Economics & Policy, EnBW
01.00 pm
Lunch break
02.30 pmDiscussion round with DSO representatives:
DSO's as system managers of the energy transition

Mr. Rainer Stock, Head of Unit, German Association of Local Utilities (VKU)
02.50 pmPresentation by EWE Netz
Mr. Tobias Kempermann, Head of Markets & Politics, EWE Netz
Mr. Marcus Merkel, Senior Advisor to the Board of Management, EWE Netz
03.10 pmPresentation by Stromnetz Berlin
Ms. Lisa Hankel, Energy Economics and Policy, Stromnetz Berlin
Mr. Mario Teichmann, Energy Economics and Policy, Stromnetz Berlin
03.30 pmDiscussion round
Mr. Albrecht Tiedemann, Head of Unit, Renewables Academy (RENAC) AG
05.30 pmOptional: Guided city tour on foot*

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Stakeholder Meetings and Site Visits


10.00 amSite visit: Guided tour through the EUREF Campus
Mr. Jonas Schorr, Guide
Mr. Robert Weyrauch, CEO, ebee Smart Technologies
12:45 pmLunch break
02.00 pmStorage: Energy storage in the context of the Energiewende
Mr. Urban Windelen, Executive Director, BVES
Ms. Valeska Gottke, Senior Expert for Communications and Markets, BVES
03.30 pm
Coffee / tea break
04.00 pm
Flexibility study by Innogy SE
Dr. Stefan Richter, Vice President Regulatory Management & Grid Economics, Innogy SE

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Stakeholder Meetings and Concluding Workshop


09.00 amWholesale and retail markets for electricity in Germany/Europe
Mr. Maximilian Rinck, Senior Business Developer, EPEX Spot SE
10.30 amCoffee / tea break
10.45 pmVirtual Power Plants
Mr. Jan Aengenvoort, Chief Communications Officer, Next Kraftwerke
12.30 pmLunch break
02.00 pmConcluding workshop
Mr. Albrecht Tiedemann, Head of Unit, Renewables Academy (RENAC) AG
04:00 pm End of the official program