Volume 1 Chapter 10

Electricity is vital to virtually every aspect of modern living. It is therefore appropriate to start this chapter with its historical development for a better understanding of the present challenges. Electricity generation will be thoroughly explored in order to help the reader understand the advantages and disadvantages of the various generation technologies and of the primary energy sources used for its generation. In particular, the need for the right infrastructure to accommodate the intermittent nature of electricity generation by renewable energies while maintaining security of supply is explained, and possible solutions are presented and examined. Hydroelectricity development is analysed in detail since this form of electricity generation is becoming more significant, particularly as we will see, in Africa. Electricity supply cannot be achieved without transport and distribution facilities. A large part of this chapter is therefore devoted to this aspect, after an examination of the fundamentals of smart grids, storage and smart metering development. This will be followed by an analysis of market aspects relating to electricity generation and supply. We conclude with the huge challenge faced by EU policymakers in order to ensure that electricity prices stay competitive.