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Parliamentary questions
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26 April 2021
Answer given by Ms Simson
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-000247/2021

The Commission was informed of the incident already on 8 January 2021 by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for electricity ( ENTSO-E). According to the information available to the Commission, a failure in a substation in Croatia appears to have led to a series of cascading failures and ultimately to the separation of the synchronous area in two areas. However, the exact root causes of the incident and their physical location are not known yet. Based on the available information, communication and coordination tools among transmission system operators and with the Commission and the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators ( ACER) appear to have worked well, in line with the new rules for coordinated grid operation and coordination in emergency situations(1). This prevented major disturbance in the system and the programmed disconnection of customers.

In accordance with EU legislation(2), a technical investigation panel has been set up. An interim report(3) published on 26 February provides a first collection of facts but the incident is still under investigation. The technical panel will look into the causes with the aim to publish a detailed report on the incident by summer 2021. It is therefore too early to draw any conclusion. 

The Commission will assess the conclusions of the expert panel once available and decide then on further action, if needed. The matter was raised at the Electricity Coordination Group meeting on 28 January 2021 and this Group will be informed regularly.

(1)See Regulations (EU) 2017/1485 and (EU) 2017/2196
(2)ENTSO-E Incident Classification Scale methodology, developed in accordance with Regulations (EU) 2019/943 and (EU) 2017/1485.
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