Safeguards for consumers in the energy transition

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    The energy system of the future is smart and sustainable, with IT applications making it possible to efficiently match supply of and demand for sustainable energy. It will turn consumers into active players, responding to financial incentives to either or not use energy at specific moments, or supply self-generated energy to the system. The system will be organized in such a way that everybody will charge their cars when the sun is shining, for instance, or will postpone their use of energy when there is not enough sunshine or wind. This paper points out that new European and national legislation is needed to ensure that innovations for energy transition can take place and for market parties and consumers to take on new roles. It is argued that not only the substance of energy legislation needs to be adapted to facilitate the energy transition. Also procedures for the implementation of important energy decisions and the required level of legal protection will have to be adjusted to the new systems and to the active role of consumers. Procedural innovations are needed to improve the position of energy consumers, giving them more of a say, increasing their participation, and offering them legal protection in regard to decisions on energy regulations by the energy regulators, such as the Dutch Autoriteit Consument en Markt (ACM – Consumer and Market Authority), that affect their interests where affordable, reliable and sustainable energy supply is concerned. It is important that consumers be given better opportunities to exert influence in advance on the conditions and rates for access to the energy system. By creating support for the content of energy decisions, time–consuming and expensive legal procedures afterwards can be prevented.
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages79
    Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2016

    Publication series

    NameTILEC Discussion Paper


    • energy transition
    • safeguards
    • legal protection
    • participation
    • consumers


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