The European electric system is undergoing radical change; the adoption of the Third Energy Package has favoured competition and the increase of energy flows also from third countries. At the same time, energy from renewable sources has become the most important electricity resource through the implementation of the Renewable Energy Directive.
Although these are all elements typical of a proactive energy system, Europe is still facing major challenges before its energy situation is considered efficaciously adequate. The current shift towards decentralized energy production implies an increase in the number of players involved and a subsequent change in current market roles: against this backdrop the electricity market has to adapt to the new scenario and integrate all market variables and players, including a now flexible energy demand, energy providers and renewable energy sources. Flexibility is a tangible example thereof: it enables industrial consumers to directly participate in the market and take advantage of increased competition. This scenario requires, however, an effective regulatory framework, capable of reducing external measures like capacity mechanisms.
The European Commission Communication also paves the way for a public consultation on the characteristics that the future electricity market should possess in order to best meet the needs and expectations of consumers. The Communication considers a number of enquiry issues, e.g. how to improve the principles related to the functioning of the European Union electricity market (infrastructures, investments, forms of intra-state cooperation, etc.); how to promote cooperation mechanisms between the European Union Member States (cooperation between energy providers, regional coordination of energy policies, improvement of interconnections); how to ensure reliable and safe energy supplies (intra-state capacity mechanisms, use of common standards, etc.).
The aim of this public consultation is to enable all stakeholders to give their feedback on all the issues raised by the European Commission on the electricity market.
The replies to the consultation will have to be submitted by 8th October 2015 in compliance with the instructions of the European Commission; at the end of the consultation process, the Commission will publish a document summarizing the answers received. We look forward to it!