Offshore Grids: Towards a least Regret EU Policy

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dc.contributor.author MEEUS, Leonardo
dc.contributor.author LÉVÊQUE, François
dc.contributor.author AZEVEDO, Isabel
dc.contributor.author SAGUAN, Marcelo
dc.contributor.author GLACHANT, Jean-Michel
dc.contributor.editor ZORN, Annika
dc.date.accessioned 2012-03-01T08:40:42Z
dc.date.available 2012-03-01T08:40:42Z
dc.date.issued 2012
dc.identifier.issn 1977-3900
dc.identifier.issn 1977-3919
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1814/20775
dc.description QM-AI-12-002-EN-C (print)/QM-AI-12-002-EN-N (online) en
dc.description THINK Policy Briefs are abbreviated versions of THINK Reports.
dc.description.abstract The objective of the 5th report of THINK has been to formulate policy recommendations to the European Commission (DG Energy) on offshore grids, and this brief is derived from that report. The development of an offshore grid is able to play a significant role in the accomplishment of the EU energy and climate objectives. The total installed capacity of offshore wind farms is expected to increase from the existing 3 GW to about 40 GW by 2020. The number one priority project in the recently proposed EU infrastructure package is the Northern Seas offshore grid. There are two possible offshore grid developments (Figure 1): there could be a multiplication of standalone lines, which already exists today; or there could also be a transition towards combined solutions, which requires more advanced grid technology than what is currently on the shelf. The first would correspond to an increase of shore to shore investments to exchange energy across borders or to relieve congestion within an onshore grid, and an increase in farm to shore investments to connect offshore wind farms to the existing onshore grid. The second instead would imply mixed investments, combining the connection of offshore wind farms with the creation of interconnection capacity. The potential for EU added value depends on which of these alternative offshore grid developments will prevail. The economic case for combined solutions is still uncertain, but regulation needs to be proactive to avoid compromising this possible offshore grid development. It means that we have to address the fact that the currently mainly national regulatory frames for farm to shore and shore to shore investments are unsound, and the difficulties to design and develop combined solutions are tremendous. We recommend the European Commission to take initiatives to: 1// harmonize into economically sound regulatory frames for offshore transmission investments; 2// harmonize the renewable support schemes for offshore wind farms; 3// facilitate the ex-ante allocation of costs and benefits of offshore transmission investments; 4// speed-up offshore grid technology development; 5// adapt the Community-wide transmission planning to offshore grids, while also allowing regionalized solutions for the implementation of some of these remedies. A least regret EU policy on offshore grids indeed also implies giving a chance to regional initiatives, such as the North Seas Countries’ Offshore Grid Initiative.
dc.description.sponsorship The THINK project (2010-2013) is funded by the European Commission under the Seventh Framework Programme, Strategic Energy Technology Plan. (Call FP7-ENERGY-2009-2, Grant Agreement no: 249736). Coordinator: Prof. Jean-Michel Glachant and Dr. Leonardo Meeus, Florence School of Regulation, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute
dc.relation info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/FP7/249736
dc.relation.ispartofseries Florence School of Regulation
dc.relation.ispartofseries 2012/02
dc.relation.ispartofseries [THINK] Policy Briefs
dc.relation.uri http://www.florence-school.eu
dc.rights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.title Offshore Grids: Towards a least Regret EU Policy
dc.type Technical Report en
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