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See detailHow Germany achieved a record share of renewables during the COVID-19 pandemic while relying on the European interconnected power network
Halbrügge, Stephanie; Buhl, Hans Ulrich; Fridgen, Gilbert UL et al

in Energy (2022)

In 2020, Germany reached a maximum share of 50.5% intermittent renewables in electricity generation. Such a high share results in an increasing need for flexibility measures such as international ... [more ▼]

In 2020, Germany reached a maximum share of 50.5% intermittent renewables in electricity generation. Such a high share results in an increasing need for flexibility measures such as international transmission flexibility, i.e., electricity imports and exports. In fact, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Germany changed from a former electricity net exporter to a net importer. This paper, therefore, analyzes what we can learn from the resulting development of German electricity imports as a flexibility measure from a market, environmental, and network perspective. We analyze data on electricity imports/exports, generation, prices, and interconnection capacities of 38 bidding zones, respectively 11 countries within the ENTSO-E. In particular, we formulate three hypotheses to partition our overarching research question. Our results reveal that from a market perspective, Germany's increased need for transmission flexibility did not generally result in increased prices for German electricity imports. Also, from an environmental perspective, Germany increasingly relied on electricity imports from countries that exhibited a lower share of renewables. Finally, during the COVID-19 pandemic some of Germany's interconnection capacities to its neighboring countries exhibited a higher utilization. In view of our results, German policymakers may reflect on decarbonization policies considering a holistic European perspective. [less ▲]

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See detailRenewable electricity business models in a post feed-in tariff era
Rövekamp, Patrick; Schöpf, Michael; Wagon, Felix et al

in Energy (2021), 216

To expand intermittent renewable electricity sources (RESs), worldwide energy policy makers have introduced fixed feed-in tariffs (FITs). However, FITs typically expire after a limited time period. Due to ... [more ▼]

To expand intermittent renewable electricity sources (RESs), worldwide energy policy makers have introduced fixed feed-in tariffs (FITs). However, FITs typically expire after a limited time period. Due to the intermittent electricity supply of RES, market distortions, and insufficient flexibility options, exclusive participation in wholesale electricity markets might not be a viable business model for RES that no longer receive a FIT. Thus, it remains unclear which RES business models (RBMs) ensure a viable operation of RES in the post FIT era. To close this research gap, we present a typology encompassing five RBM archetypes: wholesale electricity market (1), physical power purchase agreements (2), nonphysical power purchase agreements (3), self-consumption (4), and on-site power-2-X (5). The typology includes three additional service layers, which may enhance the profitability of RBM archetypes by opening up additional revenue streams: infrastructure services (1), electricity storage services (2), and ancillary services (3). We highlight the need for new approaches to quantify the viability of RBM archetypes and services layers under different regulatory, technological, and market conditions. To prevent the imminent decommissioning of existing RESs, policy makers must shape the next era of the energy transition, weighting the implications of market-based and intervention-based energy policy approaches. [less ▲]

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