Established in 2007, Eress has continually worked for a common and standardised rail “way” throughout Europe. This non-profit organization, wholly owned by its nine current partners, uses the jointly owned Erex IT System to exchange and settle energy in 9 countries and across borders.
Over the past 15 years, much has changed in the railway energy sector. Eress has been at the forefront of significant changes. Dyre Martin Gulbrandsen, Director at Eress, explains what he has seen as the four most important achievements.
“The first significant achievement goes back to the beginning. The Scandinavian countries came together to find common solutions for measuring, settlement and billing of traction energy for Scandinavian trains. This ultimately became the start of Eress Partnership. We though across borders from day one.
The second achievement is our focus and competence on the whole value chain, from the meter on the train to the energy market, including how to apply new technology. When we started, we thought the core of our solution was smart algorithms. These algorithms are still with us now, with a reliable process that has continued to work, giving us a proven track record over 15 years. Thirdly, we’ve built the Eress cooperation and the Erex system step-by-step over 15 years – with more partners, innovative technology, and new functionality. Finally, Eress has built a European community where we share experience and competence. Our partner countries are actively taking part in setting up and improving a European standard for energy metering, settlement, and billing. This was unregulated before this work began, leaving a gap between the railway regulations and the energy regulations. I think we have favourably integrated the railway and energy market.”
Since the foundation of Eress, the development of a standardised European solution, has been the focus. However, the work has not finished yet, as there is still more work to accomplish in the future. Regulations change and new innovative technologies will emerge, so new solutions must cover the needs of each partner as they adapt. Plus, as more partners join Eress, both current and new partners’ benefit. Eress has achieved a significant economy of scale, and this increases even more by bringing on new partners.
Higher energy prices are a concern for our partners and customers all over of Europe. Dyre Martin Gulbrandsen talks of the future of higher energy prices, “In the railway sector, what I see is a renewed interest and focus from the railway undertakings on how they manage their energy use. The aim is to reduce energy consumption and become more energy efficient. That’s good for the environment and reduces costs for companies.”