Grid Losses

During the transport of electric power through an electricity grid, power is lost due to physical reasons, i.e. less energy is received than was fed into the grid. This energy is called grid losses.

The energy lost is physically proportional to the square of the transported energy and, depending on grid function and transmission level, amounts between 1 % and 7 % of the transported energy. 

The grid operators are responsible for the compensation of grid losses. To this end, they purchase appropriate quantities of energy in form of a scheduled supply with the required load profile.

Common concept to cover grid losses

Domestic grid operators have to compensate grid losses of around 3.1 TWh in the Austrian electricity transmission and distribution grid every year. Based on an agreement reached by Oesterreichs Energie and the regulatory authority E-Control, a common procurement strategy was agreed to procure electricity to cover grid losses in the Austrian transmission grid. As of 2011, Austrian Power Grid AG (APG) will act as a major buyer of electricity on the international wholesale markets and centrally procure around 85% of electricity needed to cover grid losses throughout Austria.


A stated goal of Austrian Power Grid AG (APG) is to address as many potential interested parties and thus potential offerers as possible by ensuring the transparent, market-based and non-discriminatory procurement of the required electricity to cover grid losses. By conducting a common tender for the required volumes for most Austrian grid operators in the form of tradable products (annual, quarterly and monthly base and peak products), it serves the largest possible market and thus a liquid market. On the other hand, this should also be reflected in the lively participation of European offerers (traders, producers) as suppliers.

Participating grid operators

The list below names grid operators that have contracts with Austrian Power Grid AG (APG) to obtain electricity to cover grid losses:

Austrian Power Grid AG
Netz Oberösterreich GmbH
Energie Klagenfurt GmbH
Energie Ried Gesellschaft m.b.H.
KNG-Kärnten Netz GmbH 
Linz Strom Netz GmbH
Netz Burgenland Strom GmbH
Netz Niederösterreich GmbH
Stadtwerke Kapfenberg GmbH
Stromnetz Steiermark GmbH
Vorarlberger Energienetze GmbH
Wels Strom GmbH
Wiener Netze GmbH 

The grid operators listed usually obtain energy to compensate grid losses for downstream (distribution) grid operators that do not have a direct contractual relationship with Austrian Power Grid AG.

Currently the share in the electricity to compensate grid losses that is procured by APG amounts to around 98% of grid losses in Austria. In sum, APG therefore procures some 3 TWh annually to cover grid losses.

If you would like to take part in the common procurement as an Austrian grid operator, please contact us directly.

Origin of grid loss energy

If a consensus is reached within the electricity industry to dispense with grey electricity and to switch to the procurement of green electricity, the special balance group representative APG will make all efforts to comply with this in the procurement of grid loss energy amounts also, provided that any accruing additional costs are compensated for by the regulating authorities.