Transmission and distribution losses ranged between 2.24% and 10.44% across Europe in 2015.At transmission level, power losses ranged between 0.89% and 2.77%. This is according to a whitepaper issued by the Council of European Energy Regulators (CEER).

The paper comprises data issued by national regulatory authorities in 27 European countries regarding levels of power losses, how they are defined, calculated and valued.

The whitepaper analyses how regulations, smart meters and distributed generation resources impact on utilities’ technical and non-technical losses.

According to the report, it is important to reduce power losses and increase consumer energy efficiency, in order to help keep consumer energy bills low, especially since costs related to technical and non-technical losses are in the end added to consumer bills.

In order to reduce overall power losses, technical and non-technical distribution losses, the Council says there is need to:


1) Harmonise definitions for improved benchmarking

2) Make more data available, such as the availability of energy injected into distribution grids, which would permit the calculation of distribution system losses as a percentage of energy injected into distribution grids

3) Incentivise system operators to reduce losses instead of passing losses on to consumers

4) Employ a life cycle costing approach that includes losses when making investment decisions

Technical losses:

1) Increase voltage levels

2) Apply less transformational steps to deliver electricity to consumers

3) Utilise new and improved equipment

4) Employ distributed generation in a more efficient manner, including combining it with local storage

5) Optimise network flows – reduce peaking

6) In general, pursue network architecture and management that promote the highest efficiency

Non-technical losses:

1) All countries should collect data on these types of losses

2) Focus on more accurate recording of electricity consumptions through improved metering and the use of smart meters

3) Reduce theft and other hidden losses.

Despite the lack of standard definition of technical and technical losses, CEER define technical losses as energy converted to heat in power lines and transformers, resulting from the laws of physics. Technical losses are determined by the properties of the grid and its components.

Non-technical losses refer to energy delivered and consumed, but for some reason not recorded by a meter.


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