Efficient smart grid energy technologies
Context / Background
One of the major challenges Europe will face in the coming decades is to make its energy system clean, secure and efficient, while ensuring EU industrial leadership in low-carbon energy technologies.
Achieving such ambitious objectives requires affordable, cost-effective and resource-efficient technology solutions to decarbonise the energy system in a sustainable way, to secure energy supply and to develop the energy internal market in line with the objectives of the Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan) and the related energy legislation (notably the Renewable Energy and CCS Directives) – the energy policies designed to deliver the 2020 targets and to shape energy market frameworks for 2030 and 2050.
The backbone of the future energy system
Solutions that will be developed and rolled out to the market in the next years will form the backbone of the energy system for many years ahead. Scale and ambition of this challenge require enhanced co-operation between all stakeholders, including the European Commission, Member State administrations at national, regional and local level, the industry, the research community and society at large.
It is essential that energy market stakeholders from both the public and private sectors understand, accept and implement market up-take measures and procedures cost-effectively at national, regional and local levels. It is also important for the society to understand existing challenges and the implications of their possible solutions, so as to build confidence amongst investors and to ensure sustained public acceptance.
Modernising the European electricity grid
The fast growing share of variable and decentralised renewable generation requires a fast adaptation of the grid, both on a European and local level. The new grid needs to be more flexible, increase capacity, include demand response and active user involvement (managing the complex interactions among millions of active consumers and micro-generation) whilst minimizing environmental impacts.
Development of new business models
The new integrated energy market will be achieved through the integration of balancing opportunities offered by generation, demand response and storage at different levels and scales. New business models will be needed to develop new market architectures and rules and provide the information, services, and privacy guarantees. They should support open markets for energy products and services and activate the participation of consumers and new market actors, e.g. aggregators, while ensuring a fair sharing of the newly generated benefits, including to the citizens. SET-Plan priorities together with the derived technology roadmap from the European Industrial Grid Initiative and the foreseen Integrated Roadmap provide further guidance for the development of the potential of grid technologies and their integration.