Brussels and Berlin have signed an agreement last week which should help to avoid any power shortages over the upcoming weeks.
Although the last couple of days might have been warm, winter will eventually come. As a quick reminder, the Belgian authorities had pointed out the lack of Megawatt to provide the whole country with electricity at all times during the winter. As six out of seven nuclear reactors will be out of service in November (only Doel 3 will work), Marie-Christine Marghem, the Federal minister in charge of energy, was still looking for about Megawatt 850 some weeks ago.
This is why Charles Michel, the Belgian Prime Minister, has been in touch with Angela Merkel, the German chancellor last week. The phone call between the two leaders focused essentially on the ways to provide Belgium with electricity in winter.
This potential outage might have been solved. Marie-Christine Marghem went to Berlin last Tuesday and signed, together with Peter Altmaier, the German minister in charge of Economics and Energy, an agreement which aims to prevent any shortage of electricity in Belgium in wintertime.
This document deals with the import capacities, which can usually be limited because of electricity transfers from North of Germany to South of Germany. The agreement then stipulates Berlin should make 20% of high-voltage lines free in Germany, in order to make the exportation to Belgium easier in case electricity is needed here.
Apart from those provisions, it is interesting to point out the fact that an underground connection between Germany and Belgium should be set up and become operational at the end of next year. If the authorities and workers comply with this deadline, it will soon be possible to transfer 1 GigaWatt between the both countries.
While both France and Luxembourg have been committed to provide Belgium with power if needed over the next weeks, the shortage that has been planned a couple of weeks ago will (hopefully) be avoided.