Poland - support mechanism - auctions for the systems above 40 kW.

7/07/20160 comentarii

The amended Act of RES came in last in force from 01 July. The Act introduces as a basic support mechanism - auctions for the systems above 40 kW. The Act envisages a new division of the auction baskets. Such changes are mostly aimed at promoting to a greater degree those technologies that generate energy in a stable and predictable manner.

The Chairman of the Energy Regulatory Office (ERO) will announce the first auction before the end of 2016. The executive regulation regarding the maximum volume and value of energy to be sold through an auction in 2016 is to be issued before 31st August 2016. Reference prices are to be set by the energy minister's executive regulation not later than 30 days before the date of the first auction in 2016, also before 31st August 2016. The Minister of Energy will be able to define the length of the support period by way of an executive regulation on a basis of criteria indicated in the Act. Until that regulation is issued, the 15-year period of selling RES-generated electric energy within the framework of the auction system is to continue.

The Act removed guaranteed tariffs (FIT). Neither will prosumers be able to count on the currently applied energy repurchase price equal to 100% of the market price. Electric energy placed in the grid by prosumers will be compulsorily settled jointly with energy taken from the grid in proportion of 1 to 0,7 for the systems above 10 kW and 1 to 0,8 below. These settlements will be made by obligated sellers under the readings of the measuring and billing system mounted in individual micro-installations. Settlements will be conducted without charging prosumers. At the same time, prosumers will not be charged for the distribution of settled energy.

The RES Act gives a definition of "prosumer" who are the end recipients acquiring electric energy on the basis of a comprehensive agreement, who produce electric energy only from renewable energy sources in a micro-installation in order to use it for their own purposes not associated with their business activity governed by the Act on the Freedom of Conducting Business of 2nd July 2004. Such wording of the definition is meant to exclude energy enterprises from the definition's scope.

The Act removes the controversial requirement to hold one point of connection to the grid and produce energy from only one type of source. A hybrid RES installation is define as a unit made up of at least two RES installations, which may be additionally supported by energy storage. The unit must be capable of providing the recipient with constant access to electric energy in accordance with the quality requirements specified in the provisions of Energy Law.
A new notion of energy cluster was introduced. Clusters are civil-law agreements related to production, sustained demand, trade and distribution of electric energy within the framework of a distribution grid with rated voltage lower than 110 kV affecting an area not larger than a single county (Polish: powiat). Clusters should make it possible to conduct businesses that consist at the same time of producing, selling and distributing energy. The legislator proposes separate auctions for energy produced in clusters.

The Act added a new form of investing in renewable energy sources – the energy co-op. The energy cooperative is a cooperative in the meaning of Cooperative law Act which subject is production of: electrical energy in RES with total installed capacity not higher than 10 MW or biogas RES installations with yearly efficiency not higher than 40 mln m3 or heat in RES installations with total installed capacity not higher than 30 MWt and balancing demand, distribution and trading of electrical energy, biogas, heat for the cooperative and its members needs in the area of urban-rural municipalities.
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