Showing posts from February, 2016

Speculating on the Minimum Impact of the European Commission Decision on Green Certitifcates

Any day now we expect the European Commission, DG Competition, to announce its decision of the Polish green certificate system as state aid.  Several issues will be addressed and possibly some complex cost recovery issues raised but not entirely answered. The thrust of the complaint in SA 37244 was that support of co-firing was too much and was out of line with the cost of production via that technology. This fact was admitted by the Ministry of Economy and even the former Prime Minister's website. In addition, the support for old hydro plants that were built many years ago was attacked as illegal or incompatible with the rules, since the law precludes providing operating support for projects already fully depreciated.  Much of the law is set out in earlier posts on this blog. Taking the incontrovertible facts about co-firing and old hydro, it appears that co-firing might get a 50% retroactive*  reduction (maybe more?) of aid already provided in line with the adjustment made

Cancellation of Conference on EU decision on Green Certificates

At this point, there is a real shortage of organizations and people who want to discuss the European Commission enforcement case on green certificates and their review of the new law in Poland. Due to lack of sponsors and reluctance of folks to even agree to discuss the topics, the planned event to publicly explore all this stuff has to be cancelled. I am, however, able to discuss the issues and review what the decision means with individual clients willing to retain me for this purpose.  The consequences of the EC action will be sweeping and complex. I am sure that the professional conference companies will schedule something on these issues in the coming months, but they will likely have speakers without much in-depth knowledge of the subject and/or speakers not willing to honestly discuss the implications and issues.  

Poland Misuses EU Money for Energy Transition to Maintain Coal

There are no real surprises in the latest Bankwatch/Friends of the Earth report on Central European Governments use of EU climate change and environmental funds. "... Polish energy policies and strategies continue to follow a path which centres almost entirely on sustaining the existing energy system...."   CLIMATE’S ENFANTS TERRIBLE SHOW NEW MEMBER STATES’ MISGUIDEDUSE OF EU FUNDS IS HOLDING BACK EUROPE’S CLEAN ENERGY TRANSITION (January 2016) p. 24. "77% of heat energy comes from burning coal, with other fossil fuels such as gas and oil adding up to cover almost 90% of heat production. The energy system is an oligopoly, with four out of five coal mining companies fully or partially state-owned and the production market mostly shared between four companies where the state is a majority stakeholder. A workforce of 100,000 hard-coal miners, 240 trade unions with significant political power as well as many interconnections between the government and the energy sector

PV Solar Energy Reaches Grid Parity in 20 US States

Big news. This date was supposed to be far off in the future. It is happening much quicker than people expected a decade ago. States will good sunlight have reached the "sweet spot" where PV is as cheap as any other electricity. This is one of the realities that escapes Polish politicians and the advocates of coal. "Parity" in Poland is also a higher price than most markets in the United States (easier to reach).