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In EDF’s energy mix, fossil-fired power plants are used to supplement nuclear power plants, which supply the base load and meet daily, recurrent demand.
Fossil-fired plants account for 3.6% of EDF’s annual power generation in France. Their use allows EDF to adapt rapidly to fluctuations in energy demand and meet requirements during periods of high demand, which are increasingly frequent and extensive.
Since electricity cannot be stored, EDF adapts its generation capacity in real time to match consumption. Fossil-fired energy allows sudden variations in demand to be managed, for example during cold weather snaps (peak power).
Most of the generation facilities in France were built between 1950 and 1980 and have an average age of 37 years. They represent an installed capacity of 11.8 GW. For several years EDF has been carrying out an extensive modernization and development program on its fleet of fossil-fired fleet.
n addition to the construction of a 430 MW combined cycle gas turbine commissioned in Blenod in 2011, EDF is continuing a repowering project for three oil-fired units on the Martigues site (3 x 250 MW) into two combined cycle gas turbines, each with a capacity of 465 MW. At the end of December 2011, two of the three oil-fired units had been shut down. Industrial commissioning of the first combined cycle gas plant in Martigues is scheduled for the first half-year 2012.
1670 MW brought on line
4095 MW under construction
11 447 MW the installed capacity of the operating fleet.
11 808 MW of installed power plant operation, with the commissioning of two combustion turbines in the Paris region of 185 MW each.
At international level, EDF continues to invest in gas power plants in the United Kingdom, with three combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) units under construction in West Burton (1,311 MW), and in the Netherlands, where the SLOE2 CCG unit has been operational since 2009.
Edison, an EDF Group affiliate, undertook a major development program between 2001 and 2007, with the commissioning of eight CCGT units (for a total of 7,000 MW with Edipower) in Italy, and the creation of a joint company with Hellenic Petroleum in Greece to operate a CCGT unit of 400 MW and to develop a second.
EDF is continuing its R&D program to further reduce CO2 emissions in its fossil-fired plants. We are studying the development in Europe of the latest generation coal-fired plants (‘supercritical’ or ‘ultra supercritical’ plants), which are more efficient in terms of output and environmental performance. In Germany, for example, construction of EnBW’s ‘RDK8’ supercritical coal-fired plant has begun in Karlsruhe.
Furthermore, we are continuing our research to optimize technology for capturing and storing CO2 in order to reduce atmospheric emissions or even eliminate them completely.
Taking a closer look