At a session of the Executive Assembly of the World Energy Council (WEC) in Istanbul, the General Director of Rosseti, Oleg Budargin, presented the priority integration projects that the company is currently pursuing.
“Energy integration processes are of tremendous importance in terms of providing for the stable development of the global economy, ensuring energy security, and tackling pressing issues of environmental protection,” noted Budargin.
The Rosseti chief outlined the key objectives that will make it possible in today’s constantly-changing economic climate to boost the stability of energy systems. In Budargin’s opinion, this will be facilitated by the expansion of integration ties with neighboring countries and continents, solving the sustainable-development trilemma and, of course, expanding WEC membership.
“While there are currently no global electric-power markets per se, questions of integration are already coming into sharp focus on all of the international platforms. Among other places, the topic is actively discussed at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum,” noted the Rosseti head while paying special thanks to WEC Secretary General Christoph Frei for his regular participation in such discussions.
The topic of integration was also addressed in early September 2016 at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok. The importance and timeliness of integration projects was underscored by Russian President Vladimir Putin, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe and South Korean President Park Geun-hye.
With the aim of creating even better conditions for energy integration, the Rosseti chief tabled a motion to hold a separate meeting within the scope of regular sessions of the WEC Executive Assembly or Summit of World Energy Leaders.
“It would seem important to look at the experience of companies operating on the American and Eurasian continents,” said Budargin.
Russia is already taking practical steps towards the structural overhaul of its own energy system, shifting it to an innovative new track. In particular, the Chairman of the Russian Federation Government, Dmitri Medvedev, has approved the “roadmap” for implementation of the technological platform known as “Energynet” – a revolutionary new national-energy strategy based on flexible, active-adaptive systems.
Implementation of the “Energynet” national technological initiative will make it possible to leverage Russia’s size advantage in providing for the widescale integration of the Eurasian energy space.
At the same time, Oleg Budargin stressed that the development of a smartgrid is not the end in and of itself, but rather a means to allowing consumers to take active part in energy management.
Noting Russia’s special role in global integration processes, Budargin pointed to the country’s unique geopolitical positioning.
Discussing the latest emerging trends in the development of electric power, Budargin expressed confidence that over time, the role of evenly-distributed, environmentally-friendly sources of energy would be sure to grow. That said, Budargin thinks that their variability and transience only heightens the attractiveness of integration projects making it possible to transmit high volumes of power over long distances, thereby giving all consumers access to the energy currently being generated while facilitating the creation of a clean-energy market.
Just recently, in fact, negotiations in this very area have entered into the practical realm.
In the Asia-Pacific Region, for example, serious consideration is being given to the creation of an energy super-ring that would connect Russia, Japan, Korea, China and Mongolia. A quadripartite agreement has already been signed between the concerned grid- and investment-companies to further elaborate the project. Phase one assumes the construction of an energy bridge from Russia to Japan that would be capable of transmitting up to 2 GW of electric power. The next step would entail the creation of infrastructure for the implementation of massive projects involving the construction of renewable energy sources (RES) within the territory of the Russian Federation. This would be a boon to Russia, while at the same time serving the needs of neighboring countries. In Central Asia, a timely project involves the creation of the Great Caspian Ring, connecting Russia, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Iran. An Intergovernmental Memorandum of Understanding has been signed towards that end, as has a separate agreement among interested companies. The project envisions power transmission in a volume of up to 1 GW.
What’s more, development efforts also include the European direction, assuming use of the Russian energy system as a kind of transcontinental energy bridge that would connect Europe with Asia. The project has already been discussed with the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC) and France’s EDF.
Attendees of the session of the WEC Executive Assembly gave high praise to Rosseti’s initiatives for the development of integration projects, noting the importance of incorporating this thrust into the Council’s long-term work strategy.
Among other things, Assembly members argued in favor of supplementing the final communique with the issue of the need to coordinate such projects in the furtherance of the principles of the energy trilemma. “Governments, business leaders, investors and the public at large are going to have to find new ways of breaking through the impasses currently facing the energy sector. What’s needed is the adoption of forward-thinking solutions and the creation of integrated, efficient and powerful infrastructure. That said, these solutions need not be offered by the energy industry alone. At the same time, it is the energy sector that enjoys the historic opportunity to spearhead the new industrial revolution,” reads the final communique.
At the same session, Rosseti General Director Oleg Budargin was re-elected to the position of WEC Vice President for Regional Development.