Covid-19's Impact on European Power Sectors: An Econometric Analysis

Philipp Hauser, David Schönheit, Hendrik Scharf, Carl-Philipp Anke, Dominik Möst
2021 Energies  
Covid-19 affects the personal lives of millions and led to an economic crisis. Changed behavioral patterns and a reduction of industrial activity result in a reduction in power demand, and thus Covid-19 impacts the power systems around the world. Bottom-up mapping of the effect of Covid-19 on the energy demand is challenging, if not impossible. In order to analyze the impact of the pandemic on power demand, we instead propose a simplified approach based on an econometric analysis that
more » ... the country-wide load reduction of Covid-19, using the number of active cases as well as the specific lockdown period as proxies. The time span covered is from 1 January 2016 to 31 August 2020. This long time span allows us to investigate the effect of Covid-19 on the power demand. We find that in Germany (DE) and Great Britain (GB) the power demand is reduced by about 1–1.7 MW per case, while in France the demand increased by 1 MW per case during times outside of the lockdown. On the other hand, in France the lockdown itself has a much higher load reduction effect in France than in GB and DE. Based on the elasticity of power demand regarding Covid-19 cases, we calculate the impact of Covid-19 on the power prices through reduced loads. We find that Covid-19 reduced power prices by 3 to 6 EUR per MWh. The effect of Covid-19 on carbon emissions in the power sector is likely to be small. In Germany, the country with the highest absolute level, emissions in the power sector were reduced by approximately 2% (4 Mio. t CO2).
doi:10.3390/en14061639 fatcat:ga7pbfxx3vczxfjvrfvv6wwvay