Procedure

The procedure for drawing up the Network Development Plan Gas consists of three elements for which the German transmission system operators are responsible: the scenario framework, the draft Network Development Plan and the first public consultation process.

The requirements for the NDP are stated in the German Energy Industry Act, amended in June 2011 (EnWG, Section 15a) on the basis of the Network Development Plan for the entire EU (Regulation 715/2009/EC). All the documents drawn up by the transmission system operators are submitted to the National Regulatory Authority (Bundesnetzagentur/BNetzA) for review and published on the website of FNB Gas in order to allow the authorities, key market players and the public to examine them and submit their comments. The final NDP is developed from the first draft of the scenario framework in a total of nine phases.

Scenario framework

The NDP is drawn up on the basis of a number of different scenarios which are published for comment in a consultation procedure. The scenario framework is drawn up by a recognized expert on behalf of the transmission system operators.

In the scenario framework, the transmission system operators define theoretical assumptions concerning development in the production, supply and use of gas and gas exports and imports to and from other countries over the next 10 years. Planned investments in infrastructure in the regions throughout the EU, also with regard to storage facilities and LNG regasification plants, are taken into consideration, as are the effects of any interruptions to supplies. In drawing up the various scenarios, a link to the scenario framework of the electricity transmission system operators is also established.

Network Development Plan

The transmission system operators draw up the Network Developments Plan on the basis of the calculations made in the scenario framework and in cooperation with the National Regulatory Authority (Bundesnetzagentur/BNetzA). The draft Network Development Plan models gas flows over the next 10 years and includes all the measures required for the optimization, reinforcement and expansion of the network in line with demand and for ensuring secure supplies and safe and reliable network operation over the next 10 years. The draft for the first NDP was submitted to the National Regulatory Authority in April 2012. The final NDP 2012 was published in March 2013 after revisions.

Consultation

All the key market players are closely involved in the drafting of the NDP. In a transparent process, all the parties concerned have an opportunity to comment in public and to indicate their requirements for the gas system of the future. Both the scenario framework and the drafts of the NDP are presented to the public for comment in several consultation rounds. The consultation documents and all the comments received are published and are taken into consideration in the drafts for the scenario framework and the NDP.

The final public consultation on the draft NDP is coordinated by the National Regulatory Authority (Bundesnetzagentur/BNetzA). Following this consultation, the draft is either confirmed or has to be revised by the transmission system operators. The last stage in the procedure is confirmation by the National Regulatory Authority and the publication of the final NDP.