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REALISE FORUM (Renewable Energy and Liberalisation in Selected Electricity Markets-Forum)

Research Team:

European Commission DG TREN - Intelligent Energy Europe Programm
Jan 01, 2005 — Feb 28, 2007
Contact Person:
PD Dr. Lutz Mez, Dr. Maria Rosaria Di Nucci

Project partners:

Berliner Energieagentur
BI Norwegian School of Management
CSTM-Centre for Clean Technology and Environmental Policy, University of Twente
Slovenski E-Forum

Project description

In energy policy, one of the biggest challenges for decision makers is to give life to energy market frameworks which allow free market forces to operate in such a way that supplies of reliable and affordable energy are ensured whilst at the same time all other social objectives are met in a sustainable manner. In the case of renewable energy sources, a crucial question remains whether to meet this challenge the European Union would necessarily have to move from a technology-based approach (fixed tariffs) to a more market-based one (TGC), promoting international certificate trade, certification and labelling as well as internalising external costs for the prices of conventional power. Against this background, REALISE FORUM (Renewable Energy and Liberalisation in Selected Electricity markets–Forum) attempted to establish a basis for coherence for national renewables policies in the view of a possible harmonisation or coordination of financing mechanisms and support scheme for RES-E. This has been done by investigating the experience gained with feed in tariffs (FIT) and tradable green certificates (TGCs) in countries that are in an advanced phase of liberalisation of their electricity markets.

Building on and complementing running national and EU activities, REALISE-Forum has:

  • identified existing barriers for a possibly harmonised/coordinated European RES support scheme;
  • initiated an organised dialogue of various stakeholders to discuss steps on the way to future incentive schemes compatible with market criteria, sustainability and social acceptability;
  • created a platform for various stakeholders to discuss in a balanced way specific support policy issues and promote the exchange of information and experience;
  • drawn recommendations for future policymaking.

The project has been managed by a joint contact point based in Berlin and by 5 national desks in the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Slovenia and Norway. These were responsible to initiate a dialogue with national key actors on the adopted RES support system and to estimate costs and benefits of a TGC system in comparison to other support measures. Valuable input and advice has come from a steering group whose members included decision makers and experts from the key actors and target groups also from countries such as the UK and Belgium that have already adopted green certificates, but are not present in the consortium. This group has been joined by co-ordinators of related EU-projects.

Major results

  • A coherent analysis and an assessment of the interplay between RES-E support measures and liberalisation of the electricity markets in selected new/old Member States of the EU, where the liberalisation of the electricity market has already been completed or almost accomplished;
  • Identification of barriers to converging support systems;
  • Development of basic principles as a guidance for a possible coordinated RES-E support system;
  • Lessons for policy from ongoing experiences from FIT and TGC schemes and recommendations for a coordinated, open and transparent support system in line with liberalisation principles, cost-efficiency and sustainability criteria;
  • Establishment of a regular dialogue and a stakeholder´s forum.

Lessons learnt

  • It is too early for the harmonisation of RES-E support in the EU;
  • Hasty reforms based on theoretical foundations are bound to fail. Liberalisation is not accomplished yet;
  • In some countries the investment context for RES-E is still perceived as too risky or unstable, especially because of administrative and grid barriers;
  • FITs are the most widespread instruments to support RES-E in the EU. There has been a pattern of policy diffusion from pioneer countries like Germany to Spain (premium tariffs) and new member countries as Slovenia and the Czech Republic;
  • The co-existence of systems provides an ideal ground for learning about the strength and weakness of different types of support and to step up coordination;
  • The optimum set-up of RES-E support instruments can vary widely from one country to another depending on its peculiar electricity market and economic and social conditions;
  • In some cases the two main support schemes, namely TGC and FITs, could be complementary rather than competing (Italy);
  • The compatibility between the RES-E market and the internal electricity market can be facilitated by rules on GO disclosure, redemption, trading, labelling and the like;
  • Trading schemes for greenhouse gas emissions, green and white certificates must be carefully designed to keep the different markets separate. Linking their associated markets would risk undermining the objectives of the respective schemes.   

Reports & Downloads

  • Country reports
  • Comparative survey
  • Guidelines for a coordinated approach
  • Recommendations for policy
  • Workshops and conference proceedings
  • Articles/Reports
  • Newsletters

Publications (selection)

Arentsen, Maarten; Bechberger, Mischa; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria: Renewable energy and liberalisation in selected electricity markets-Forum. Final Report. CSTM-SR Nr. 318, 2007, 93 p., (CSTM Studies and Reports) ISSN 1381-6357 download (PDF, 1311 KB).

Arentsen, Maarten; Bechberger, Mischa; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Mez, Lutz, “Stakeholder Dynamics on Harmonisation/Coordination of Support Systems for Renewable Electricity. The Realise-Forum Appraisal” in: Lutz Mez (Ed.): Green Power Markets. Brentwood, Essex: Multi-Science Publishing Co. Ltd. 2007, pp. 51-70.

Arentsen, Maarten; Bechberger, Mischa; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria: Renewable energy and liberalisation in selected electricity markets-Forum. Recommendations for Policy, Berlin 2007http://www.realise-forum.net/pdf_files/070402_REALISE-F_Policy_Recommendations_D14-final.pdf

Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Mez, Lutz: “Actors’ Expectations and Viewpoints on the RES-E Support System in the EU: The Experience of the German Desk of REALISE FORUM” in: Lutz Mez (Ed.): Green Power Markets. Brentwood, Essex: Multi-Science Publishing Co. Ltd. 2007, pp. 71-93.

Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria: “The Role of Renewables in the Italian Energy Policy: The Development of Green Power” in: Lutz Mez (Ed.): Green Power Markets.Brentwood, Essex: Multi-Science Publishing Co. Ltd. 2007, pp. 311-334.

Bechberger, Mischa; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria, “Die Harmonisierung der EU-Fördersysteme für erneuerbare Energien - Hindernisse und Triebkräfte“,  Energiewirtschaftliche Tagesfragen 57 (2007), Nr. 7, pp. 20-24.

Casale, Claudio; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Salvaderi, Luigi, “Progetto Realise: Sistemi di incentivazione” Pianeta Terra 14, April 2007, pp. 44-49

Casale, Claudio; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Salvaderi, Luigi, “Progetto Realise: Certificati verdi” Pianeta Terra 12, Febr. 2007, pp. 45-48

Casale, Claudio; Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Salvaderi, Luigi, “Il Progetto Realise-Forum”, Pianeta Terra 11, January 2007, pp. 45-49

Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Mez, Lutz; Reiche, Danyel,  “Country Report Germany”, technical Report for WP 3 of the REALISE-Forum IEE-project, http://www.realise-forum.net/pdf_files/070110_ RF-Countryreport-Germany-finaldraft.pdf ,  2007

Midttun, Atle, Gautesen, Kristian, “Feed in or certificates, competition or complementarity? Combining a static efficiency and a dynamic innovation perspective on the greening of the energy industry”, Energy Policy 35 (2007) 1419–1422

Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Tempel, Sybille, “Zukunft der Fördersysteme für Erneuerbare Energien in Deutschland und Europa“, Energiewirtschaftliche Tagesfragen 56, Nr. 9, 2006

Di Nucci, Maria Rosaria; Mez, Lutz; Tempel, Sybille, “Proceedings of the Final Conference of the REALISE Forum Project”, Berlin,  2006, http://www.realise-forum.net/pdf_files/070314_Proceedings_A_Opening_and_session_revised.pdf