Request for capacity

All customers must start the connection process with their local grid operator. Following guidance from the local grid operator, which is also in dialogue with Statnett, it may turn out that your project requires so much capacity that it should be connected directly to the transmission grid. Then you will be directed to Statnett, and you can start the connection process with us. As a rule, this will only be relevant for a small number of customers with particularly high power needs. For all other customers, the dialogue will be with your local grid operator.

For all connection enquiries, you must use the application form (only in Norwegian at the moment) at the bottom of the page, where we ask for information about your business and the purpose of the connection.

Following first contact, Statnett will provide guidance on relevant matters such as capacity in the grid and planned measures, based on known and available information from e.g. area plans, in addition to information on the process moving forward.

Moving forward in the process, we assess the customer’s maturity. For each step in the process (guidance, request, order, need for area plan and order), you must submit a new application form with updated and more comprehensive information about the connection. All information about the project that is entered into in fields marked as “required” in the form must be sufficiently documented with the accompanying documentation.

We set requirements for a gradually higher level of project maturity at each step in the process.  Maturity is assessed on the basis of objective criteria shown in the evaluation form

Tick “request” in the application and send it to tilknytning@statnett.no, with a copy to Statnett’s regional connection manager. You will receive confirmation that your request has been received within 14 days. The confirmation will include an estimated response time for the request. You will be notified if your project is not considered to be sufficiently mature.

Statnett may charge a fee to clarify whether it is operationally viable to comply with the customer’s order, when the customer’s power requirements and/or location have not been reasonably clarified. The fee is determined on the basis of actual expenses incurred.

Statnett assesses capacity in the transmission grid

Statnett must make an analysis of the power system in order to be able to determine whether there is enough capacity to connect the requested capacity in existing grids. The criteria used in the analysis to determine whether it is “operationally viable” are explained in more detail at the bottom of this page under “Frequently asked questions”.

Statnett will – provided  that the requested project is sufficiently mature – make an assessment of whether there is available capacity in the transmission grid and thus  whether it is operationally viable to connect the requested volume. This means that there is no need for measures in the transmission grid in order to connect the requested capacity to the grid.

All major requests are handled in Statnett’s work with the relevant area plan. This will provide a more holistic perspective on operational viability assessments and an overall more rational and efficient process for responding to the request.

As the transmission system operator (TSO), Statnett is responsible for monitoring all interfaces with both the transmission grid and in regional grids, see section 7 of the Norwegian Regulations on System Operation (FoS). In order to determine whether connecting the requested capacity to the grid is operationally viable, the TSO makes an assessment of the capacity at all relevant interfaces.

The further process will depend on whether there is available capacity, or whether there is a need for grid measures.

  1. Statnett can reserve spare capacity for mature customers

If there is available capacity, the next step is to order the available capacity. The available capacity is not reserved, which means that other players may also order the available capacity. To order capacity, you must use the same application form as for the other steps in the process.

In order for Statnett to be able to reserve capacity, the project must be sufficiently mature. We use the abovementioned evaluation form (see link at the bottom of the page) to assess maturity.

We will reserve capacity for the first sufficiently mature customer who places an order. We therefore ask you to order capacity as soon as possible after your project is sufficiently mature. If several customers meet maturity requirements in the same period, we will reserve capacity for the customer with the highest maturity score.

In your order, you must update the application with, among other things, a progress plan from the request. This progress plan will be the basis for future reporting and follow-up on progress.  It is important to ensure that your progress plans are realistic, as lack of progress could lead to loss of reservation in favour of other customers who follow their progress plans.

If there is no available capacity, we will study and implement measures to increase capacity

Statnett prepares area plans for grid development in all regions as a basis for our comprehensive grid and system development. As a result, we will be able to see system measures and installation measures in context, and bring together the needs for market measures, refurbishment, grid capacity and maintenance.

If there is no available capacity to connect the request to the existing grid or following grid reinforcements that are already in progress, we will assess the need for further measures in the transmission grid.

All needs will be coordinated in the relevant area plan before project start-up, including mature connection requests. We then need confirmation that you wish to continue the request into a report/study phase, as well as updated information about the connection request. The area plan will identify the measures that make it operationally viable to connect the customer. If the only factor triggering a project is the customer’s project, it must have a sufficient degree of maturity (level 2 or higher for all criteria) before we initiate a project.

The earliest time for making a reservation for the planned increased capacity is after Statnett initiates the grid development.  The same guidelines apply here as when reserving available capacity (see above).

Statnett will not normally enter into agreements with customers until after the start of the development project. Until then, the need is handled in the work with the area plans. Making an overall assessment in an area plan enables us to spend less time on each individual case and allows us to carry out such assessments from a more holistic perspective.

After the area plan has identified the necessary measures to connect the requested volume and the grid development project has started, sufficiently mature customers will have the opportunity to order and reserve capacity in planned measures in the area plan.  If several customers meet the reservation requirements and wish to reserve a limited capacity, capacity in the planned grid will be prioritised between different customers based on when the customer applied with fulfilled reservation requirements, and based on the results of the maturity assessment.

The grid development project will start when the framework has been clarified. When Statnett starts a grid development project, we will in most cases enter into an agreement with the customer on coordinated project development. Among other things, the agreement regulates coordination of the parties’ project development, reservation of capacity and the customer’s payment of a share of the project development costs for the measures in the transmission grid. When Statnett has made an investment decision, in some cases it will be relevant to require an investment contribution from the customer. Costs for studies and assessments and investment contributions are regulated in the Norwegian Regulations governing financial and technical reporting, income caps for network operations and transmission tariffs.

If the necessary measures are subject to construction investment contributions, you must cover a proportionate share of the costs and of studies and assessments, as well as the investment contribution. Statnett will provide indicative information on what kind of measures we assume will be necessary, with a rough estimate of costs and schedule. You must then decide if you want to move forward with the process.

The table below shows examples of the time required to implement measures after they have been identified through our work with the area plan. Lead times will vary from case to case.

 

Design and implement measures* 

Increased transformer capacity 

4–6 years 

New substation 

5–10 years 

New power line 

7–12 years 

 

*Median values from the start of the project until the facilities are in operation, including time to secure statutory permits. Lead times for new grid facilities will vary between projects of the same category. The main reasons for these variations are scope of work, need for disconnections and time required for licensing processes. Interfaces to other projects, access to materials, geographic location, topography and seasonal work are also factors that often affect lead times.

We will be in dialogue with you about the expected schedule for connecting your project to the grid.

In summary, the following agreements may be necessary to implement grid measures and before entering into a grid agreement:

  • Agreement on an assessment of grid measures: After entering into the agreement, Statnett conducts a study/assessment of conceptual solutions (system solution), which results in a chosen concept. If Statnett’s previously selected concept for the area will provide sufficient capacity for the requested connection, there is no need for a new study/assessment.

  • Agreement on coordinated project development: After the concept has been chosen and the customer has endorsed further development, we will initiate a grid development project. This stage involves examining the documentation required for submitting a licence application. It also involves considering various solutions both technically and financially, limited to the concept from the first stage. Among other things, the agreement regulates coordination of the parties’ project development, reservation of capacity and the customer’s payment of a share of the project development costs for the measures in the transmission grid. After Statnett has received a licence and made an investment decision, the procurement process and construction can begin.

  • Agreement on investment contributions: Until an agreement is reached on investment contributions, Statnett will provide non-binding estimates of investment contributions. The estimates will vary somewhat as the project matures and the costs gradually become less uncertain. When entering into an agreement on investment contributions, Statnett and the customer commit to a specific estimate that must be recalculated in accordance with the regulations. Cost overruns in excess of 15 per cent are not charged to the customer, unless the customer has requested changes in the project’s scope or design during the process. If the costs are lower than estimated, the customer will be reimbursed their share in full.

    On 1 March 2022, Statnett changed its practice on when to enter into agreements on investment contributions. As a general rule, for projects that only involve the construction of a new transformer, we enter into agreements on investment contributions with a binding estimate, based on the choice of solution. For projects where a new substation or new power line will be required to connect the request, Statnett now, as a general rule, enters into an agreement on investment contributions before or at the time of Statnett’s investment decision. Previously, these agreements were entered into in connection with the start of construction. The agreement on investment contributions covers the investment contribution obligations for the construction phase up to the operational start-up of the required grid facility.

 

Connection with conditions that stipulate terms for disconnection or limitations in consumption or production

If there is no available capacity in the transmission grid on ordinary terms, we may consider providing a connection with conditions that stipulate terms for disconnection or limitations in consumption or production, if this is operationally viable and desirable for the end customer, cf. section 3-2 or 3-3 of the Norwegian regulations concerning grid operations and the power market (NEM). Such terms are voluntary for all parties and facilitate faster connection to the grid.

In accordance with the regulations, customers are not entitled to any form of compensation when entering into such an agreement or when disconnecting or limiting consumption or production. The customer and Statnett as grid owner will make a joint assessment of any connections with such terms. Statnett as TSO must also be involved and approve all conditional agreements in the transmission grid to ensure operational control.

Reserved capacity is followed up through an agreement with Statnett

You must regularly, and at least every 12 months, provide a written report on the project’s progress compared to the submitted progress plan. We will monitor your progress through dialogue and reporting, and this will form the basis for continuing to hold your reserved capacity. The format and frequency of reporting will be clarified in more detail in dialogue with Statnett’s project manager for the project in question. The connection manager will also follow the development with the project manager.

If your project does not progress as anticipated, and you no longer expect to utilise the reserved capacity as planned, Statnett will enter into a dialogue with you. Grid capacity is in high demand in many areas, and as there may be other customers waiting for capacity, Statnett has the right to cancel the reservation that was made for the delayed project.

If the project follows the progress plan, a grid agreement will be entered into with Statnett three to six months before operational start-up. For existing customers, the grid agreement must be updated. After connection, the right to capacity is regulated in the grid agreement.