According to the Electricity Act (hereinafter: 'E-Act'), the grid operator is obligated to transport electricity. This obligation is stipulated in Article 24, paragraph 1 of the E-Act. However, this obligation does not apply if the grid operator reasonably has no capacity available on its grid. In recent months, there has been a significant amount of litigation on this subject, with the grid operator almost always prevailing.

The grid operator explains why it has no capacity available. The court's subsequent consideration is consistently that the grid operator is not required to transport electricity as long as the grid expansion has not been realized. This leaves the applicant in a difficult position. Choosing a different energy supplier is possible; choosing a different grid operator is not. Therefore, the applicant must wait until capacity becomes available.

Applicants might question the extent to which it is 'reasonable' to have no capacity available in 2024. Agreements to reduce fossil fuel usage were already made in 1997. The electrification of society has also been known for a considerable time. The knowledge that the electricity grid needed to be reinforced has been around for quite some time. Someone requesting extra electricity capacity often hears that capacity might be available sometime at the end of 2028.

A company that has just made a substantial investment to electrify its production process cannot do much with that timeline. Such a company might suddenly have to invest in a gas or diesel generator to get the desired amount of electricity. However, this could mean the company no longer meets current environmental standards. Is there then reasonably no transport capacity available?