Renewable energy technologies and industrial success do economic

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Renewable energy technologies and industrial success; do economic incentives matter? Johan Albrecht Ghent University

Renewable energy technologies and industrial success; do economic incentives matter? Johan Albrecht Ghent University Faculty of Economics and Business Administration johan. [email protected] be IEW June 17 -19, 2009

Structure • Economic incentives always matter… • However, which incentives will trigger a sustainable

Structure • Economic incentives always matter… • However, which incentives will trigger a sustainable economic development; carbon values or quantitative targets with production subsidies? • Renewables in Deploying Renewables 2008 and Energy Technology Perspectives 2008 (IEA) • Barriers for intermittent sources • Techno-institutional constraints for renewables

IEA • Deploying Renewables 2008 (DR): what is the untapped realisable potential, given existing

IEA • Deploying Renewables 2008 (DR): what is the untapped realisable potential, given existing incentive structures (2020)? • Energy Technology Perspectives 2008 (ETP): what is the optimal contribution of renewables in cost-effective climate policy schemes (2050)?

DR & the untapped potential

DR & the untapped potential

Despite generous production subsidies, the untapped potential remains enormous

Despite generous production subsidies, the untapped potential remains enormous

Untapped potential up to 2020 as % of electicity generation in 2005

Untapped potential up to 2020 as % of electicity generation in 2005

Do production incentives matter? Onshore wind; incentives between 60 to 120 €/MWh -> policy

Do production incentives matter? Onshore wind; incentives between 60 to 120 €/MWh -> policy effectiveness between 0 and 3%

Biomass; incentives between 50 to 100 €/MWh -> policy effectiveness between 0 and 3%

Biomass; incentives between 50 to 100 €/MWh -> policy effectiveness between 0 and 3%

Incentives to overcome cost barriers? EU electricity prices around 80 € per MWh in

Incentives to overcome cost barriers? EU electricity prices around 80 € per MWh in 2008: onshore wind, biomass & hydro are already cost-competitive -> production subsidies = private rents With prices of today (<40 €/MWh); biomass is cost-competitive

Production incentives are (too) high but clearly insufficient… • Private rents up to 100

Production incentives are (too) high but clearly insufficient… • Private rents up to 100 €/MWh… • Diffusion of profitable (post-subsidies) renewables is blocked by non-economic barriers. • Assessments of incentive schemes should include non-economic barriers.

When carbon values trigger the energy transition: IEA ETP 2008 • ACT – stabilize

When carbon values trigger the energy transition: IEA ETP 2008 • ACT – stabilize global CO 2 emissions by 2050 – additional investment cost of 17 trillion $ or 0. 4% of global GDP each year • BLUE – 50% reduction of global CO 2 emissions by 2050 – additional investment of 45 trillion $ or 1. 1% of global GDP each year • ACT & BLUE: undiscounted fuel savings > upfront investment cost

IEA ETP 2008 (2) Source: IEA (2008), Energy Technology Perspectives

IEA ETP 2008 (2) Source: IEA (2008), Energy Technology Perspectives

IEA ETP 2008 (3) • ACT – carbon value up to 50 -100$ per

IEA ETP 2008 (3) • ACT – carbon value up to 50 -100$ per ton CO 2 • BLUE - carbon value up to 200 -500 $ per ton CO 2 • [full information, perfect foresight, no financing constraints, stable incentives, . . ] • BLUE CO 2 reductions decomposed: 54% efficiency investments, 21% renewables, 10% CCS in power generation, 9% CCS industry, 6% nuclear -> least-cost investment strategy • Cost-efficiency as priority: Art 3 UNFCCC & Art 10(a) Kyoto Protocol

IEA ETP 2008 (4)

IEA ETP 2008 (4)

Fuels in baseline, ACT and BLUE Fossil system is resilient, becomes complemented BLUE 2005:

Fuels in baseline, ACT and BLUE Fossil system is resilient, becomes complemented BLUE 2005: Biomass 23%, wind 3%, solar 2. 6% van primary energy

Cost-efficient CO 2 reductions CO 2 reduction cost from replacing old coal and gas

Cost-efficient CO 2 reductions CO 2 reduction cost from replacing old coal and gas plants by ultra-efficient thermal plants; between 20 tot 40 € per ton Efficiency coal plants; 37% now -> 50% Efficiency gas plants; 45% now -> 68% R&D to improve “modern renewables”

R&D Energy-related R&D as % total R&D: 11% in 1985 -> 3% in 2005:

R&D Energy-related R&D as % total R&D: 11% in 1985 -> 3% in 2005:

R&D (2)

R&D (2)

IEA • Deploying Renewables 2008 (DR): high incentives, very modest development, explicit recognition of

IEA • Deploying Renewables 2008 (DR): high incentives, very modest development, explicit recognition of non-economic barriers, no focus on cost-effectiveness of climate policy • Energy Technology Perspectives 2008 (ETP): low carbon values to trigger cost-effective climate strategies, impressive development of especially older renewables (biomass & hydro), rather vague about non-economic barriers

 « Modern renewables » are just part of the energy system • Global

« Modern renewables » are just part of the energy system • Global energy system; 90% fossil (oil, coal & gas) – 10% nuclear, hydro & biomass (old renewables) – 0. 60% modern renewables (wind, solar & geothermal; share of 0. 45% in 1990) • How to green the global energy system -> focus on efficiency of old existing system (fossil, old existing nuclear, biomass, hydro: 99. 40%) ; enormous potential to green the world

Barriers for intermittent sources • Electricity = continuously balancing demand supply • Denmark 20%

Barriers for intermittent sources • Electricity = continuously balancing demand supply • Denmark 20% RES but only 6% consumed in Denmark (rest sold at low cost to hydro companies in Scand. ) • Production incentives do not trigger balancing, backup & storage investments; these problems are externalised

Techno-institutional constraints for renewables Long-run development of renewables requires clear policy schemes to upgrade

Techno-institutional constraints for renewables Long-run development of renewables requires clear policy schemes to upgrade and expand grids, to develop balancing and back-up capacity, etc -> very expensive necessities (complicated by liberalisation? )

Conclusions • There are several puzzles about renewables… • Industrial success requires tackling the

Conclusions • There are several puzzles about renewables… • Industrial success requires tackling the complete TIC; production incentives are least efficient way to proceed (but most attractive for rent-seekers) • Production incentives as well as carbon values do not overcome important institutional constraints (grids, balancing & back-up) • With carbon values, institutional constraints are smaller and climate policy more affordable