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Refining Regulatory Regimes

Utilities in Europe

Edited by David Coen and Adrienne Héritier

With regulation seeking to foster competition at the same time as also having to protect essential services, the authors investigate regulatory styles, costs of new regulatory functions and how firms in the new regulatory landscape access and influence regulatory authorities. The authors consider how EU pressures may hinder or help the functioning of new regulatory markets and the establishment of business–regulator relationships, as well as the broader policy implications for these new regulatory environments. The book also determines how regulatory authorities emerge and evolve under different state traditions and assesses, over time, the degree to which there is potential for convergence, divergence and continued differences as regulatory functions mature.
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Chapter 6: The Politics for a Sustainable Energy Industry: Renewable Energy Policy in the United Kingdom and in Germany

André Suck


André Suck INTRODUCTION The national energy industries, comprising the gas and electricity markets, are currently facing two challenges which require that they and their governments provide new policy solutions. One challenge is to introduce more competitive market structures into the respective sectors against the background of an internal energy market (IEM) in Europe (Cameron 2002; Glachant 2003; Matláry 1997; Pollitt 1999). The other challenge concerns the increasing relevance of sustainability strategies, which is especially due to the growing seriousness of the problem of global warming. Related to this, one pivotal strategy to combat global warming has been to increase the use of renewable energy technologies (RETs) in electricity generation (Baentsch 1997; Eyre 1998; Groscurth and Weinreich 1998). Renewable energy technologies comprise generation installations that use non-fossil resources, which are unendingly available (for example, solar energy, geothermal energy, biomass, wind and hydro) and do not cause climate-damaging greenhouse gas emissions such as carbon dioxide (CO2); they therefore represent sustainable forms of energy generation. Despite the fact that, since the early 1990s, both the United Kingdom and Germany have had public policies supportive of bringing RETs onto the market, the increased energy capacity generated from renewable resources in the two countries reveals striking differences. In Germany, since 1990 it has been possible to increase the share of energy generation from renewable sources significantly, by 40 per cent (Staiß 2000). In the electricity market, it has been possible to increase the share of renewable sources of the total electricity supplied from 6.7...

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