The Danish Energy Agency manages the legislation on the electricity market in Denmark. Specifically, the Danish Energy Agency develops the legal framework for production, transmission, and distribution of electricity, and for competition, consumer protection and security of supply.
Denmark has a leading position within the green transition, and Denmark is a front runner with respect to integration of large amounts of renewable energy into the electricity system. Maintaining this position requires that the Danish electricity system is organized such that it is possible to handle the changes in the volume of electricity generated from different sources, i.e. a Smart Grid that integrates intermittent and other electricity production and demand, across sectors (heat, transport, water, etc.).
The Danish Government launched a new partnership programme for smart energy in 2015. The purpose of the programme is to find solutions as well as barriers to reconciling the energy systems to take full advantage of the increased amounts of renewable energy in the energy system.
Electricity security of supply
Denmark has a high level of security of supply for electricity compared to most other countries. Danish consumers were without electricity supply for ~20 minutes/year on average in the last five years. The 20-year average is ~40 minutes per year. The recent improvement is mainly due to conversion from overhead lines to underground cables, primarily at lower voltage, which protects the Danish network against strong winds, lightning etc.
Thus, Denmark has a security of supply at more than 99.99 percent. Most disruptions are due to failures in the local electricity network. So far, there have never been disruptions of electricity supply due to lack of production capacity.
The electricity supply is secured by a combination of central power plants, small-scale decentralized CHP plants, wind power, solar PV cells, the electricity network, as well as interconnectors and production capacity in other countries. In addition, flexible demand is beginning to make a contribution.
In 2015, the Danish Energy Agency conducted an analysis of the historical and future security of supply for electricity. The analysis was conducted together with the major stakeholders in the electricity sector.
Read the full analysis
Responsibility for maintaining security of supply
The Danish system operator, Energinet, is responsible for the daily operation of the electricity system and for maintaining security of supply. Energinet issues an annual report on security of supply. Read the report on security of supply
The legislation on security of the electricity supply was changed in June 2018. The new rules (re)define security of supply, and they state that the Minister for Energy, Utilities and Climate sets the desired level of security of supply, formalizes the annual report from Energinet and regulates payments for services related to security of supply.
Read the legal text (in Danish)
European and regional cooperation on security of supply is increasing
The existence of international electricity connections means that countries are able to help each other in the event of shortages, for instance during power-plant breakdowns. Ensuring security of supply is therefore a task that is to some extent shared internationally, and it is one of the priorities of the energy union within the EU.
Denmark is among the countries in Europe with the strongest interconnectors to neighbouring countries compared to the national electricity demand. Capacity in interconnectors is expected to increase in the coming years (Kriegers Flak, Cobra Cable, Viking Link etc.).