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Possibly fewer green certificates for freshly accredited producers of renewable energy

The Ministry of Economy has initiated a draft government resolution according to which producers of renewable energy accredited after the coming in force of this normative act will receive fewer green certificates, which will result in a lower contribution by end-consumers for the support of such energy sources.

 The measure comes after the postponement laid down on July 1, 2013, of the allocation of green certificates for each separate technology and existing producers, till 2017 – 2018.

The draft government resolution follows a recommendation by the National Energy Regulatory Authority – ANRE, which monitored the market last year and came to the conclusion that there is overcompensation in the industry, meaning that producers receive too many green certificates referenced to the costs they incur.

The project provides the reduction by 0.7 green certificates per MWh for micro hydro-power plants, so that only 2.3 certificates will be offered for new plants, or 2 certificates for re-tooled plants.

In the case of wind farms, there is a cutback by 0.5 certificates till 2017 and by 0.25 certificates as of 2018. Therefore, new investors will receive only 1.5 green certificates by 2017 and 0.75 certificates as of 2018.

The reduction for photovoltaic energy is even more substantial: the number of certificates is reduced by 3, so that producers will get only 3 green certificates, compared to 6 at present.

The government also reduced the support for renewable energy as of July 1, 2013. Under the Government’s Urgent Ordinance No. 57/2013, the grant of one green certificate for wind energy and micro hydro-power plants, and of two certificates for photovoltaic energy, respectively, was postponed. The green certificates will be recovered till 2017 for hydro and solar power plants and till 2018 for wind farms, respectively.

The legislation in force before July 1 provided that the number of green certificates could not be modified until January 1, 2014 for photovoltaic projects and until January 1, 2015 for the rest of energy harnessing technologies, but this was all changed under an article of GEO No. 57/2013, so that the number of certificates can now be reduced at any time. „By this provision, and consistent with the [European] Commission’s request in the letter dated 09.10.2012, the deadlines by which a cutback in the number of green certificates was not allowed were removed, according to Community legislation on state aid according to which immediate action is needed to eliminate overcompensation,” reads the note for the substantiation of the government resolution.

According to Transelectrica data, in mid-2013 Romania had wind farms with a capacity of 2,163 MW in operation; 378.5 MW of solar parks’ capacity; 472 MW of hydro-power plants; and biomass power plants with a capacity of 43.2 MW.

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