Results 1 - 10 of 1809
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[en] Deregulation of electricity industry in Europe has tended to start with a grace period of energy surplus inherited from the previously expansive coordinated economies and further amplified by better resource utilisation from extended international trade. The regulatory challenge has therefore primarily been to allocate existing generation to consumers in an efficient way. However, as energy demand increases, due to economic growth, the challenge of providing new capacity surfaces. The Nordic region, which has been a pioneer in internationalising and deregulating electricity, is now approaching this stage, ahead of most of the rest of Europe. While the Nordic case is characterised by specificities related to hydropower it also raises the more general challenge of capacity expansion under a deregulated market economy. The article therefore discusses how the Nordic investment challenges of today shed light on more generic challenges that may become more general European challenges of tomorrow. In a final section, the article discusses policy options available to address the investment/price-hike challenge. The argument is put forward that recursion to some degree of coordinated governance might seem necessary if solutions are confined within large-scale technical systems. However, within the context of a small-scale decentralised technological development, one may be more confident of competitive solutions. (Author)
[en] We consider the possibility of improving the utilization of the capacity of the Nordic transmission grid, by improving on the methods for congestion management. We use a simplified model of the Nordic power market, and different load-scenarios are developed in order to illustrate the effects. By improving the coordination of the system operator function, we may achieve that the actual bottlenecks, both as regards to the location and capacity, form the basis for the definition of price areas. This may result in a better partition of the grid, not necessarily following the borders between the control areas of today's system operators. We also consider solving intra zonal bottlenecks 'directly', through the area prices and 'indirectly' by 'moving' internal capacity constraints to the borders between price areas. The examples illustrate that this 'indirect' congestion management may be costly, and result in larger price differences than necessary. (author)
[en] This note investigates price differentials between electricity forwards and portfolios of short-term futures with identical delivery periods at the Nordic Power Exchange (Nord Pool). Since both contracts are traded at the same exchange, there is no influence of, for example, different market microstructure and default risk when examining the effect of the marking-to-market of futures on the price differential. Although the prices of the futures portfolios are, on average, below the corresponding forward prices, these price differentials are, on average, not statistically significant and not economically significant when taking transaction costs into account. Given the characteristics of the electricity contracts under observation, this is consistent with the predictions of the model and indicates efficient pricing in the Nord Pool forward market in contrast to previous results. (author)
[en] In this paper we propose a three-factor spike model that accounts for different speeds of mean reversion between normal and spiky shocks in the Scandinavian power market. In this model both short and long-run factors are unobservable and are hence estimated as latent variables using the Kalman filter. The proposed model has several advantages. First, it seems to capture in a parsimonious way the most important risks that practitioners face in the market, such as spike risk, short-term risk and long-term risk. Second, it explains the seasonal risk premium observed in the market and improves the fit between theoretical and observed forward prices, particularly for long-dated forward contracts. Finally, closed-form solutions for forward contracts, derived from the model, are consistent with the fact that the correlation between contracts of different maturities is imperfect. The resulting model is very promising, providing a very useful policy analysis and financial engineering tool to market participants for risk management and derivative pricing particularly for long-dated contracts. (author)
[en] The all-island wholesale electricity market, SEM, has to comply with the Target Model by 2016. SEM has worked well for consumers through mitigating market power, facilitating entry and ensuring adequate generation capacity, problems that will persist. But the SEM is a mandatory pool with central dispatch, the Target Model is a self dispatch with bilateral contracts. Minimal change to the SEM in complying with the Target Model is preferable to reinvention of SEM. The latter option might be appropriate when the EU internal electricity market is complete and the all-island market has sufficient interconnection to participate fully in that market. - Highlights: ► The Single Electricity Market (SEM) has worked well for consumers in Ireland. ► The SEM has to conform to the Target Model (TM) by 2016. ► The SEM is mandatory pool/central dispatch; the TM is bilateral contracts/self dispatch. ► Ensuring compliance with TM is best achieved through minimal change to SEM. ► Far reaching change is more appropriate once SEM is fully integrated in the EU electricity market.
[en] This paper investigates the competition effects of the entry of Vattenfall into the German electricity market. While the competition authorities supported the entry by approving Vattenfall's acquisition of three regional utilities, other market participants raised concerns over the emergence of an upcoming oligopoly in the German market for power generation. We contrast the efficiency hypothesis postulating pro-competitive effects of mergers with the market power hypothesis postulating anti-competitive effects. For the analysis of the two opposing hypotheses, we use an event study approach to the stock prices of Vattenfall's competitors in the German market. While we find no empirical evidence for increased market power in the German electricity market due to Vattenfall's mergers, there is some indication for efficiency increases. We therefore cannot oppose the view of the competition authorities predicting an overall positive effect for consumers as a result of Vattenfall's entry into the German electricity market.
[en] Large-scale energy reduction campaigns focusing on households generally have two shortcomings. First, an energy reduction campaign is either personalized but time intensive or time extensive but generalized. Second, because only the direct energy requirements are addressed, only 50% of the total household energy requirement is subject to reduction. The other 50%, the indirect energy requirement, is much more difficult to calculate and address and therefore not subject to reduction. In this paper, we describe a web-based tool that has the potential to overcome both of these shortcomings. The tool addresses direct as well as indirect energy requirements. By means of a simple expert system participants obtain personalized reduction options and feedback on the energy reduced. The tool was tested in Groningen (the Netherlands) with a sample of 300 households, resulting in a direct energy reduction of about 8.5% compared to a control group. The reduction in indirect energy was not statistically significant
[en] There is renewed interest in the role of supply diversity in promoting energy security. This paper explores ways of valuing diversity. A possible incentive mechanism for promoting diversity which takes account of underlying 'disparities' between different technology options is developed. The mechanism provides a way of trading off cost and diversity and results in an 'efficient' cost-diversity frontier by analogy with financial portfolio theory. If all technologies are believed to be equally disparate, the appropriate mechanism is a 'levy' imposed on market share. If the technologies are not equally disparate, the levy needs to be adjusted by technology-specific multipliers that take account of levels of disparity and patterns of market share. The analysis is applied to two stylised situations. In the long-run equilibrium case, the implications of both different patterns of disparity and different values attached to diversity are investigated. The paper also explores the implications of applying such a mechanism to the current Great Britain electricity system. The implications in terms of financial flows, for both the market as a whole and for individual operators, are investigated. Finally, the appropriateness of such a mechanism in the light of other policy goals, and possible future research directions, is discussed. (author)
[en] We analyze the electricity transmission planning process in Germany (Netzentwicklungsplan), which separates transmission expansion decisions from generation dispatch. We employ an economic modeling approach to analyze two different network planning settings. In the first setting, there is no trade-off between transmission network development and generation dispatch, as is currently the case in Germany. A second setting alternatively allows for such a trade-off, and thus represents a welfare superior way of transmission network planning. Applications with the two model variants are carried out for the German electricity system in 2035. The results illustrate overinvestment in transmission capacity and decreased welfare associated with the Netzentwicklungsplan. - Highlights: •Analyze planning and regulatory regimes for electricity transmission in Germany. •Modeling setup to analyze transmission planning process NEP (Netzentwicklungsplan). •The NEP suggests excessive network expansion. •Alternative integrated generation-transmission optimization enhances welfare. •Transmission investment needs should be reconsidered.
[en] The abundant literature on consumer feedback shows that it is an efficient instrument for reducing household energy consumption. However, the reported reductions are strongly dependent on contextual factors and on the type of feedback provided. Given the importance of learning to this respect, this dimension constitutes the core focus of the present study which reports the findings of the TICELEC (i.e. French acronym for information technologies for responsible electricity consumption) project in France. The experiment included a control group (G1: the self-monitoring group) and one equipped group (G2). All participants reduced their consumption and learnt either directly from feedback or indirectly through self-monitoring. The amount of energy savings, which is larger than in similar experiments, can be explained by two factors. First, the specificity of our sample (i.e. high income, high consumption) which allows for potentially large energy savings. Second, high involvement of participants and the building of trust. The quantitative and qualitative dimensions of learning are then discussed. Additionally, we focus on peak-load shifting in G2 with 2 subgroups (G21 and G22). The higher proportion of shifters in G22 and the higher ‘quality’ of their shifting suggest a higher level of learning enabled by the more sophisticated feedback. Although this translated into only a moderately higher rate of energy savings, the higher degree of absorbed knowledge (i.e. through ‘learning by looking through connecting’) might lead to a qualitatively distinctive type of energy saving. - Highlights: • The feedback experiment in Southern France generated substantial energy savings in all observed groups. • Focus is on observing learning with or without feedback. • Peak-load shifting appears as a significant variable. • More sophisticated feedback entails a qualitatively distinct form of learning. • Trust and confidence as central element.