© ICIS HEREN - EU urged to integrate renewables in market

The electricity sector lobby group Eurelectric is urging the European Commission to take “more decisive action” to integrate renewable sources in the energy system and avoiding conflicting national regulations distorting the market.
The calls come ahead of the EU energy council this June, when EU states are set to agree on how to complete the internal market.
Eurelectric warns that policies in several EU countries - such as intervention in wholesale and retail prices, taxation and national approaches to carbon pricing - are jeopardising European market integration.
“As a result, the role of the market is diminishing and the behaviour of market participants is increasingly driven by regulatory measures or interventions,” Eurelectric said in a statement.
The lobby group urged the Commission to push EU states harder to align “overlapping and conflicting” national regulations on a number of topics, such as renewable support schemes, national CO2 taxes and regulated end-user prices, to make sure that the internal energy market is completed by 2014.

Key actions
Eurelectric now calls on the Commission to put some key actions the top of the agenda at the next European Council meeting on energy scheduled.
These key actions include enforcing the third energy package, which has still not been implemented in several countries (see EDEM 21 March 2013).
Regional market integration should also be prioritised. Eurelectric said it was concerned the current delay in developing a pilot integrated region in North West Europe (NWE) would magnify the challenges posed by large volumes of intermittent generation coming on line.
Easy transmission of power across borders is a key part of backing up booming renewable generation.
In January, the director of the EU’s Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators, Alberto Pototschnig, said delays to the NWE day-ahead coupling project, originally expected to launch at the beginning of the year, could ruin plans to integrate the electricity markets integration by 2014 (see EDEM 30 January 2013).
Eurelectric also wants the Commission to remove measures creating market distortions such as regulated tariffs and price caps that hinder the demand and supply balance.
In this context, renewable operators should be have to take balance responsibility and sell their electricity to the market without being over-compensated by support schemes.
In November, the Commission published a communication on how to make the internal market work, warning that “nationally inspired policies” could jeopardise the 2014 market integration target (see EDEM 15 November 2012).
Energy ministers from EU states are expected to come to an agreement on the Commission’s proposal for the internal energy market at a summit due on 7 June.

(THE ICIS HEREN REPORTS - EDEM 17069 / 10 April 2013)

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