In 2017, Turkey has made tremendous strides in the development of its renewable energy sector, notably the allocation of over two billion dollars for the production of wind and solar energy. These sources of funding, or tenders, are part of Ankara’s ambitious plans for the future of renewables, outlined and set forth in the context of its 2023 goals—a holistic set of economic growth targets to commemorate the Republic of Turkey’s centennial.

To analyze Turkey’s plans for increasing its renewable energy sources, it is necessary to understand its motives in the context of the larger energy strategy. Ankara primarily aims to achieve greater energy independence and security and decrease the economic burden of energy imports which make up around half of Turkey’s total trade deficit. The increased sustainability and environmental benefits of using renewable resources are secondary bonuses.

These motives have informed the strides the country has already taken toward increased renewable energy production. Historically a country heavily reliant on oil and gas imports for its energy needs, Turkey has embarked on a strategy of aggressively developing its domestic resources. In addition to renewable energy, Turkey’s plans include increased production of nuclear energy and coal. Turkey is currently constructing its first nuclear power plant with two more planned. Meanwhile, Turkey’s plans to develop coal power lag behind only that of China and India.

Renewable energy in Turkey has grown dramatically in recent years as a result of increasing government incentives, new regulations, and the global dissemination of competitive technology. Excluding hydro power, renewables’ portion of electricity production in Turkey has risen from 0.3 percent at the turn of the century to around 8 percent today—and it continues to rise.

As part of its centennial strategy, Turkey aims to generate 30 percent of its electricity from renewables (excluding hydro) by 2023. However, the feasibility of this goal is questionable; its achievement would require reaching a level of renewable generation that is 3.5 times higher than the present level in just six years. The most ambitious targets set forth in the strategy focus on the production of wind and solar energy. Wind production, now around 5 GW is targeted to quadruple to 20 GW. Solar energy, which contributes less than 1 percent to Turkey’s production today, is targeted to rise tenfold to 5 GW.

Turkey’s renewable energy sector presents both opportunities and challenges. Due to its natural resources, the country offers exceptional potential, particularly in the solar and geothermal sectors. Turkey has the second largest solar energy potential in Europe, second only to Spain, with an average of 7.2 sunshine hours per day. Further, it has the highest geothermal potential in Europe, seventh largest in the world.

Increasing the use of renewables in electricity would also support Turkey’s longstanding goal of creating a natural gas hub within its borders by freeing up more natural gas it plans to import for export. Turkey has long aspired to act as a bridge for natural-gas-producing countries in the Middle East and import-dependent countries in Europe.  This would also contribute to energy security in the region, most notably Southeastern Europe, as well as Turkey, by providing a new, independent source to compete with the region’s dominant supplier.

Ultimately, while Turkey has yet to achieve its goals, the two tenders constitute important steps that demonstrate the foreign and domestic interest in Turkey’s renewable energy sector. Should Turkey overcome the technological and financial challenges and develop its renewable resources as envisioned, the prize will be greater energy diversification, independence, and sustainability.

Source: Atlantic Council

The third annual ‘R&D in Energy Workshop’ organized jointly by the Association of Electricity Distribution System Operators (ELDER) and the Natural Gas Distribution Companies Association (GAZBİR) under the coordination of Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EMRA) was held on Tuesday, December 19th in Ankara. Gathering universities,technocities, utilities and authorities together with electricity and natural gas distribution companies, this year’s event has presented the first R&D Achievement Awards to winners.

During “the 3rd R&D in Energy Workshop”, coordinated by the Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EMRA) and hosted by Serhat Çeçen ,Chairman of the Board of Association of Electricity Distribution System Operators (ELDER), and by Yaşar Arslan, Chairman of the Board of Natural Gas Distribution Companies Association (GAZBİR), the roles to be assumed by electricity and natural gas distribution companies in the new market were discussed along with R&D priorities. The workshop included various panels and B2B talks that allowed academics and nearly 400 professionals representing the sector to exchange information about R&D efforts in energy sector.

At the opening session of this year’s event where the first R&D Achievement Awards were presented to the winners, the opening remarks were made by Republic of Turkey Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources Undersecretary Fatih Dönmez, EMRA President Mustafa Yılmaz, Association of Electricity Distribution System Operators (ELDER) Chairman Serhat Çeçen and Natural Gas Distribution Companies Association (GAZBİR) Chairman Yaşar Arslan.

Fatih Dönmez, Republic of Turkey Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources Undersecretary: “We attach great importance to R&D in domestic energy as required by Turkey’s National Energy and Mining Strategy

During his opening speech, Fatih Dönmez, Republic of Turkey Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources Undersecretary, pointed out the following: “In our national energy and mining strategy, the essential component of the Renewable Energy Resource Area (YEKA) tender model is domestic energy, and the new domestic R&D projects. Thanks to the incentives of the government in recent years, we have seen a dramatic improvement in R&D. In 2000s, and even before 2000, the money allocated to R&D accounted for 4 in 10 thousand of the total Gross Domestic Product. The target was to reach 1% for many years, and we almost achieved only a year ago. However, we should exert greater efforts to get close to the level of 1% in the sector. Although we said that the budget to be allocated for R&D by the electricity and natural gas distribution companies is 1% of their operational expenditure budgets, these are globally determined on the basis of the total GDP.” Highlighting the importance of collaboration with universities for R&D, Dönmez also stated the following: ''We have witnessed that R&D efforts carried out by universities focus mostly on solar and wind energy. The third area studied by most of the universities is energy efficiency, which is followed by batteries and electric vehicles. In our survey, we have seen 244 million TL worth of R&D expenditure. Although it is not possible to segregate the expenditures made by each university, it was observed that solar energy received the highest amount of R&D expenditures, which is over 80 million TL. R&D expenditures costed nearly 40 million TL in wind energy, and nearly 30 million TL in battery technologies (including electric vehicles), according to our survey.”

Addressing at the workshop, EMRA President Mustafa Yılmaz stated the following: “The natural gas and electricity consumption increases as Turkey grows. I believe that we are capable of achieving more sophisticated electricity and natural gas networks, by which I mean networks that are improving while also growing into an efficient system, in parallel with the growth in our country. As EMRA, we have allocated R&D budgets for electricity and natural gas distribution companies to attain the level of international quality standards in the infrastructure of our electricity and natural gas distribution system, increase the amount of domestic energy, and decrease losses and costs.  Considering the R&D applications that have been approved by EMRA’s R&D Commission and the projects that have been completed since 2004, I assure that we have come a long way. Our Authority has approved 137 of the 369 projects submitted by the electricity and natural gas distribution companies, and 32 of these approved projects were finalized. The approximate cost of all the projects approved by our Authority since 2014 reached 111 million Turkish liras.”

Chairman of the Board of ELDER, Serhat Çeçen: ''As the electricity distribution sector, we are attaching great importance to R&D in order to maintain the continuous satisfaction of our customers and benefit from the opportunities of technology to the fullest. In the current tariff period, we have allocated 203 Million TL of the 20 Billion TL -worth technology investment.''

Çeçen who mentioned that as ELDER they are carrying out two projects that received an EU grant within the framework of Horizon 2020 added the following: ''With the SmarterEMC2 project to be completed at the end of the year, we will both be integrating the renewables to the existing electricity network by using technology, and we will be enabling the consumers to follow up their electricity consumption and thus encouraging them to save energy through a mobile application via the PeakAPP project to be completed in 2019. Through PeakAPP, our users will be able to see their electricity consumption levels on their smart phones, compare their consumption with that of other consumers and they will also be able to see their consumption opportunities. On the other hand, through the energy saving game of the application which motivates the consumers through instantaneous personalized tips for energy efficiency and suggestions,  consumers will learn and have fun at the same time. As ELDER, to be able to boost the service quality and customer satisfaction in the sector, we will continue to generate synergy between the companies and to enhance the social, national and economic benefits that we have been offering to our society and country as we did to this date.”

Yaşar Arslan, Natural Gas Distribution Companies Association (GAZBİR) Chairman, expressed the investments and the R&D efforts in the natural gas distribution sector during his opening speech. Discussing the investments in his sector, Arslan said, “The investments that have been made in the natural gas distribution sector so far are worth 27 billion TL in total. In the 5-year period between 2017-2021, we are going to make an investment of nearly 6 billion TL. Our sector is growing 8 % each year in terms of network length. Thanks to these investments, 222 new districts will have natural gas. The number of our natural gas subscribers reached 13,2 million as of the end of 2017. The distribution networks reached 55 Million citizens. 45 Million citizens are benefiting from the comfort of natural gas.'' Arslan continued his remarks as follows: ''Since 2014, 369 R&D projects were submitted to EMRA by the electricity and natural gas companies and 137 of them were approved. 19 of them were prepared by the natural gas distribution companies and 188 by electricity distribution companies. In the last 3 years the budgets of the R&D projects carried out in order to increase service quality and improve the technologies used in the electricity and natural gas sectors reached 111,3 Million TL. The amount of budget allocated to the approved projects in the natural gas sector is worth around 8 Million 590 thousand TL. As the whole sector we have an annual R&D budget of approximately 12 Million TL for 2018. The innovation investments must also be considered in the R&D budgets.”

Arslan continued as follows, “Turkey aims for a 15% reduction in its primary energy consumption by 2023. As part of the project, we are working to save energy equal to nearly 3700 MW of installed power, as well as to improve the existing buildings. The economic value of this energy saving is equal to 4 billion USD. As of 2017, there are 9.1 million buildings in Turkey. 87% of these buildings are residential buildings. The number of residences is over 22 million. 5.6 million of these residences were found to be suitable for insulation work as part of the project. We are planning to collaborate with the Renewable Energy General Directorate to offer low interest loans for insulation works to be carried out by the distribution companies. This plan covers 1.7 million residences for each year between 2018-2023. The insulation plan will allow us to save 3.7 billion cubic meters of natural gas between 2018-2023.”

Best R&D Projects in Electricity and Natural Gas Distribution Sectors Awarded

This year’s workshop has brought in something new. R&D projects developed in the electricity and natural gas distribution sectors were evaluated by EMRA and awarded accordingly. In the Category of Network Operating, the award-winning companies were Boğaziçi Electricity Distribution Inc. in electricity distribution sector, and Kayserigaz in natural gas distribution sector. In the Categories of Reducing Technical and Non-Technical Losses and Business Processes, Vangölü Electricity Distribution Inc., Dicle Electricity Distribution Inc., Aras Electricity Distribution Inc. and Akdeniz Electricity Distribution Inc. were awarded in the electricity distribution sector. Sakarya Electricity Distribution Inc. won the award in the Category of Communication Technologies while the winner of the Category of Tracking and Control was Enerya Natural Gas Distribution Companies.

During the workshop held after the opening remarks and the award ceremony, the electricity and natural gas distribution companies were informed about the R&D projects developed by the other players in the sector and potential university and industry opportunities were evaluated in the area of R&D during the bilateral meetings held within the scope of the workshop. During the last session of the workshop awareness was raised in the sector in general through the presentations made by professionals specialized in the area of Cyber Security, one of the most critical issues of today's world.

Installations of smart meters have more than doubled since 2010, per the Dec. 7, 2017 EIA report, while slower growth is the norm for demand response and energy efficiency.

According to recently-released EIA data, almost half of all U.S. electricity customer accounts now have smart meters. By the end of 2016, U.S. electric utilities had installed about 71 million advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) smart meters, covering 47% of the 150 million electricity customers in the United States.

In contrast to two-way AMI, the second-largest category of meters is one-way Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMR), a category for which meter installations peaked in 2012 at 48 million units installed.  The total AMR population of meters nationwide over last four years has wavered between 46 and 47 million total units.

Smart meters have two-way communication capability between electric utilities and customers. One-way meter-to-utility communication, also known as automated meter reading (AMR), was more prevalent before 2013. Since then, two-way AMI smart meter installations have been more common based on data collected in EIA’s annual electric utility surveys.

Two-way AMI meters allow utilities and customers to interact to support smart consumption applications using real-time or near real-time electricity data. Smart meters can support demand response and distributed generation, improve reliability, and provide information that consumers can use to save money by managing their use of electricity.

AMI data provide utilities with detailed outage information in the event of a storm or other system disruption, helping utilities restore service to customers more quickly and reducing the overall length of electric system outages.

While the EIA data has shown a healthy growth rate for AMI, equaling about 10% a year, the EIA data on uptake of demand response programs continues to show low or no growth, with total enrolled customers hovering just over 9 million as shown below:

Source: T&D WORLD

Turkey's first drillship, the Deepsea Metro 2, is expected to arrive in Turkey by the end of December in preparation for exploratory offshore drilling in the Mediterranean at the beginning of next year. The data showed that the ship, which will be used by Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO), left Norway's Hoylandsbygda port and will arrive in Turkey on Dec. 31. Turkey has already undertaken oil and gas exploration using two seismic ships, but the Deepsea Metro 2 will be the country's first active drillship.

The South Korean merchant vessel was produced in 2011, has a length of 229 meters, and is capable of drilling to a maximum depth of 40,000 feet. Turkey's first seismic vessel Barbaros Hayrettin Pasa already started conducting operations in the Mediterranean since April 2017 while a second vessel the MTA Oruc Reis is ready for exploration.

Turkey's Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak said earlier in October that Turkey will make its first deep drilling in 2018.

He added that Ankara would conduct drilling activities with a new seismic vessel, which is due for placement on the country's inventory in the last quarter of this year, as part of natural gas and oil exploration activities in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

Albayrak said that negotiations are almost complete for this new seismic vessel, which is anticipated to be the Deepsea Metro 2. "We will make our own drilling activities with our own engineers," he added.

Source: AA


NIST explores timing alternatives for smart grids

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has published a 33-page special publication reporting on the results of a workshop convened to recommend research and development priorities for alternatives to GPS time distribution in electrical power systems. “If timing is to become mission critical, redundant means of distributing timing information is essential,” according to NIST.


Please click here to read the full report.

EIA Electric Industry Data Collection

Source: EIA