the risk of cuts “very low” in the event of a normal winter, according to RTE

The number of scheduled power cuts should remain limited if the winter remains normal for the season, but also thanks to the additional availability planned for EDF’s nuclear power plants after the end of the strikes, estimated Thursday RTE, the manager of the electricity transmission network. France is not in any case in danger of an electrical “blackout”, that is to say the generalized and uncontrolled breakdown, explained Jean-Paul Roubin, executive director of customers and operation of the electrical system at the network operator.

RTE “optimistic” on the availability of the French nuclear fleet

Among the reassuring factors, RTE said it was “optimistic” about the availability of the French nuclear fleet to evolve upwards as planned after the end of the social movement which delayed certain reactor repairs for several weeks. The network situation will also depend on the level of electricity imports and the weather, a crucial criterion. RTE thus expects, in the base scenario, less than five “red” alerts from the Ecowatt system, which warns of possible targeted cuts by sending an alert.

With this tool designed as a “smart bison” of electricity, electricity consumers subscribed to the online platform or the Ecowatt application can know in real time the state of the electricity network in France. Three color codes are available: green, orange or red. From the orange level, RTE will intervene to reduce the load on the electricity network through, in particular, slight voltage drops, which should not have an impact on consumers, or by cutting off certain industrial sites remunerated for this. Eco-friendly gestures are welcome.

Confirmation the day before around 5 p.m. of the possibility of cuts

If these measures prove to be insufficient, the signal turns red, and load shedding becomes possible three days later. It is then a question of reducing consumption as much as possible on D-Day, especially during the usual peaks of consumption, i.e. in the morning (between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.) and in the evening (between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. ).

RTE will confirm the day before around 5 p.m. the possibility of power cuts. In the evening, the names of the departments potentially affected will be published on the website and consumers will be able to check with their address if cuts are planned at home. A sufficient drop in consumption – of the order of a few percent – can then always avoid cuts “until the last second”, insists RTE.

Eco-gestures can therefore concretely avoid load shedding, which will in all cases be geographically “rotating” and of a maximum of two hours per sector cut, to avoid any impact in particular on the cold chains, specifies RTE. “Sensitive” users, 1,400 in the territory, are not cut off: hospitals, national defense, security, risk industries, etc. High-risk patients treated at home (especially on artificial respirators) will be specifically notified.