Outage time structurally lower with smart grid solutions

07 March 2017

Enexis invested over EUR 705 million in the reliability of the energy grids in 2016. The 2016 annual report, which Enexis is publishing today, clearly shows that applying ICT in the energy grids results in considerably lower outage times. The introduction of 'distribution automation' has proven to be successful. About 400 medium-voltage stations were equipped with this technology in 2016 and Enexis will continue to invest in being able to read and operate the grid remotely in the coming years. By investing in ICT, the traditional grids are gradually being transformed into smart grids that can be operated remotely. With these innovations, the company is preparing to further accommodate the increase in sustainable energy in which the energy grids will be used more and more for two-way traffic for both energy and data.

Peter Vermaat, CEO Enexis Group:

"The reliability and safety of our energy grids form an important basis for a successful energy transition. It is our aim to ensure that energy is always available to our customer and that the grid is ready to receive and distribute locally generated energy. In doing so, we ensure that the energy grids can accommodate an increase in the demand for and the supply of sustainable energy. This is why we have also taken a future-oriented approach to investing in our infrastructure in 2016. This phase of the energy transition places high demands on our agility. We have to adapt our grids and our services to ensure that the energy supply will also remain reliable and affordable in the long term. We succeeded in doing this again in 2016 with a lower than average outage time for electricity and gas. Innovations, such as distribution automation, are bearing fruit. With this, we are creating real added value for our customers and society. Both in terms of a lower outage time and in the form of a decrease in CO2 emissions and a safer working environment. With regard to safety, we realised a good performance in 2016 by reducing the number of accidents resulting in absenteeism by 50%. In 2017, we will continue to work unabated on carrying out our public task whereby safety is always first and foremost. As working excellently on the energy supply is only possible when this takes place safely."

Key figures
Amounts in millions of euros
2016
2015
  % 
Capital employed 6,15 5,477 12%
Revenue 1,376 1,353 2%
Profit for the year 207 223 -7%
Work on the gird* 705 675 4%
Electricity outage time (minutes per connection) 15.2   14.2 7%
Gas outage time (seconds per connection) 45 78 -42%
Customer connections electricity and gas (x 1,000) 5,037 4,789 5%
Accident index own employees (DART rate) 0.17   0.33 -48%
Number of employees 4,39 4,299 2%

* Work package: investments and operating expenses

Low outage time and a strong increase in safety

The average time that energy was not available to customers has developed positively at Enexis in the past years. The average outage time has been considerably below the national average already for a number of years. Our customers were without electricity for 15.2 minutes in 2016 (2015: 14.2 minutes) and they were without gas for 45 seconds (2015: 78 seconds), the national average was 21 minutes. In addition to making use of smart grid solutions such as distribution automation, Enexis also aims to prevent excavation damage, which is an important cause of electricity outages.

As working with gas or electricity is not without risk, working safely always has priority. We want every employee to return home safely every day, we want contractors to work safely when working for us and we also pay attention to the safety of bystanders. The safety awareness of our employees increased further in 2016 and the number of accidents resulting in absenteeism was reduced by nearly 50% to a score of 0.17 (2015: 0.33). Our successful safety programme will be continued in 2017, as the aim is and remains zero accidents resulting in absenteeism.

Accelerating the energy transition

Enexis helps customers to increase sustainability and save energy. We worked on reducing our CO2 footprint in 2016 and, via our 'Buurkracht' programme, 165 'Buurkracht' neighbourhoods saved 1.3 million kWh electricity and 450 thousand m3 gas in 2016. In this manner, we contribute to the realisation of the Energy Agreement and the international climate agreements that were made in Paris. The smart meter roll-out was further accelerated in 2016. We installed smart meters at over 360,000 addresses in 2016. In total, over 2 million smart meters have now been installed in Enexis's servicing area.

Our ambition to accelerate the energy transition was further strengthened with the establishment of Enpuls. This new company focuses on sustainable regional development, flexibility, energy savings and sustainable mobility. Enpuls works together closely with various government and market parties to develop scalable solutions. As from 2017, Enpuls will be drawing up energy plans together with provinces, municipalities and housing corporations in order to arrive at a (local) approach for the future energy infrastructure.

Lowest possible tariffs

Based on its public task, Enexis aims to charge the lowest possible tariffs. In this manner, energy remains accessible for everyone. Enexis reduced its customer tariffs by on average 0.7% in 2016. Nevertheless, revenue rose to EUR 1,376 million (2015: 1,353 million) mainly due to the increased number of connections and metering services. Profit decreased to EUR 207 million (2015: EUR 223 million) mainly due to higher expenses related to the exchange of servicing areas with Alliander. The integration of the grid operators Endinet Groep B.V. and Enexis B.V. to Enexis Netbeheer B.V was completed successfully on
1 January 2017.

> to our annual report 2016
Outage time structurally lower with smart grid solutions