2 July 2018 2018 04:45 PM GMT

Industry, Policy Makers Explore South Eastern Europe’s Vast Renewable Potential

WindEurope and Eurelectric held a joint workshop in Sofia recently looking at how to unlock the vast potential of wind energy in South East EuropeThe event gathered policy makers and industry to discuss how to restart local markets in view of the Clean Energy Package, with a focus on Bulgaria, Greece and Romania. An enormous 500 GW of wind energy is available in South East Europe, a potential which is currently not being realised. Following the event, WindEurope and Eurelectric issued a series of recommendations to help unlock this potential.

WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson then presented these at the Central and South Eastern Europe Connectivity (CESEC) ministerial meeting in Sofia. The CESEC group gathers governments from South East Europe to discuss energy issues.

The recommendations are four-fold. First, though onshore wind is the cheapest form of new power generation in Europe today, wind energy projects are capital intensive and sensitive to regulatory uncertainty. “A series of abrupt and/or retroactive changes to national support schemes in the region since 2013 has resulted in additional risk premiums on projects. It’s as high as 12% in Croatia compared to 3.5%-4.5% in North West Europe. This means governments and consumers in the region pay a higher price for the same installations,” said Dickson.

Second, to help bring down the cost of projects in the region, WindEurope also urged governments to submit their 2030 National Energy and Climate Plans well before the end of 2019 and with an appropriate level of detail. The plans should cover the integration of regional energy markets, development of joint renewable energy projects as well as long-term decarbonisation and electrification strategies. “Investments, economies of scale and cost reductions materialise where the industry is assured of stable policy and regulation going forward,” said Dickson.

Third, European industry and consumers are already benefitting from corporate renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs). They allow large energy consumers – e.g. in IT, chemicals and heavy industry – to secure wind power at a competitive price. In 2017, almost 1.1 GW of renewables was contracted with corporate buyers, but deals are currently concentrated in Northern Europe. “In order to help countries achieve their national renewable energy ambitions and unlock billions of euros of investment, we call on CESEC governments to remove the regulatory and administrative barriers to corporate PPAs,” Dickson added.

Finally, for consumers to take full advantage of wind energy, electricity markets and grids need to be transformed and made fit for wind and other renewables. “We’d like to see CESEC develop a list of priority renewable energy projects to compete for EU funding under the Connecting Europe Facility. CESEC’s list of priority projects and actions should also include efforts to identify and support cross-border renewable energy projects,” said Dickson.

August 15th 2018
Electrification The Key To Decarbonising Europe’s Economy

Electrification is the key to decarbonising Europe’s economy, according to WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson. He said: “according to the IEA, wind will be the #1 source of electricity soon after 2030, providing more than 30% of Europe’s electricity, but electricity is only 22% of the final energy needed by Europe’s economy. Political momentum is starting to grow for an EU target of net-zero emissions in 2050. To do this we’ll need to electrify heating and transport, where the share of renewables is just 18% and 6% respectively; that has to be the #1 priority”.

August 10th 2018
Major Role For WorleyParsons’ Advisian On World’s Largest Solar Power Project

Noor Energy 1 has appointed Advisian, the global consulting firm of WorleyParsons, as Owner’s Engineer for the concentrating solar power (CSP) fourth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai. The 700MW project will be the largest of its kind in the world and as an Owner’s Engineer, Advisian will protect the owner’s interests by ensuring all contractors are adhering to project specifications. It will also provide a review of the basic and detailed engineering, manage risk and provide technical support during construction & commissioning of the plant.

July 28th 2018
IRENA: Clean Energy Deployment, Core To Sustainable Development Goals

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has highlighted the contribution renewables make to sustainable development and the substantial, cross-sectoral socio-economic benefits of energy transition during the United Nations High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development. The meeting took place at UN headquarters in New York recently and reviewed the implementation of key Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), including SDG 7 – access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy; and also underscored the importance of accelerating renewable energy deployment to realise the SDG landmarks.

August 8th 2018
Poland Scores Big: Mercedes-Benz Agrees Europe’s First Automotive Sector PPA

Mercedes-Benz has announced Europe’s first automotive Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with a Polish wind farm. It is also the first such deal signed in Poland. It will buy electricity generated at the 45MW wind farm to power its manufacturing facility in Jawor, 10km away from the wind farm. The longer-term goal is to source all of its power needs from renewables. Corporate PPA deals like this are expanding rapidly in Europe. There was a 130% increase in the volume of wind energy contracted through such PPAs in 2017 alone.

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