23 Oct 2013

An end to support for renewables? The wrong battle to fight

Fabio Genoese

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On 11 October 2013, the CEOs of 10 large European energy utilities issued a warning that the European energy infrastructure is “in jeopardy” and called for an end to support for renewables on grounds that wind and solar were mature technologies that no longer required such support. Given the unlikelihood, however, that EU decision-makers would renege on their decarbonisation or renewable energy targets, Fabio Genoese asks in this commentary whether it would not be a better strategy for conventional generators to explore new business models built around a ‘reliability pricing system’, in which nearly 100% reliability would be guaranteed for base load but not for peak demand.

Fabio Genoese is Research Fellow in the Energy and Climate Change Research unit at CEPS.