EEX Group, the market platform for energy and commodity products, has outlined ‘a programme of innovations for the energy and commodity markets of the future’ with the object of meeting the challenges and opportunities created by the increasing importance of decarbonisation, digitalisation and decentralisation. The various measures it wants to take were outlined by four of the Group’s chief executive officers at the E-world energy & water conference in Essen on 1 February.
“… The major trends of decarbonisation, decentralisation and digitalisation … will undoubtedly transform the energy markets of the future on a local, regional and global level”, said Peter Reitz, CEO of EEX. “Two aspects which EEX Group is currently working on are the even more intelligent use of data and the emergence of technologies such as blockchain.”
To support the digital transformation in the energy market, EEX recently set up the joint venture enermarket together with innogy and Süwag. enermarket is a B2B platform that enables customers to compare offers from power and gas providers online. This platform is intended to support smaller and medium-sized enterprises by providing a quick and independent price comparison for their power and gas tariffs. While there are a number of platforms in Germany that enable price comparison for power and gas in the retail sector this is a completely new approach for the B2B sector. Going in a similar direction, targeting a special customer group, namely municipalities, is the PXE procurement platform (PARC) which offers auctions for Czech power and gas. On the subject of blockchain, EEX Group is discussing with customers new ideas as to how the blockchain technology can be applied in exchange and clearing business and whether these ideas are fit for the market.
Jean-François Conil-Lacoste, chairman of the management board of EPEX SPOT, presented plans to open markets to local flexibility providers. “We are part of the ENERA project, an initiative exploring the full potential of local flexibility markets, with around 30 partners coming from various sectors.” In the framework of ENERA, EPEX SPOT along with its partners aims to launch new locational order books in order to solve grid congestions. “The idea is to develop a market-based congestion management mechanism, which will ease the growing tensions on the grid”, added Conil-Lacoste.
EPEX SPOT is also involved in the application of the blockchain technology through a partnership with LO3 Energy, a US-based energy-tech company with whom the Exchange signed a Memorandum of Understanding in December last year. Both parties commit to sharing their complementary expertise to develop solutions which connect local microgrids, as set up by LO3, with the wholesale market operated by EPEX SPOT, using the blockchain technology. A first realisation of this partnership involves pilot projects in Germany.
Egbert Laege, president of Powernext and CEO of CLTX, elaborated on how EEX Group’s committment to developing new products that facilitate and enable the integration of renewables into the market. EEX has launched a series of Energy Transition Products in recent years such as the Cap Futures and Wind Power Futures in addition to a number of 15 minute contracts on the power spot market.