The 3 changes in the Law for Renewable Energy everyone is talking about for the past few weeks


* the article was first published on the 26th of June 2012

From Solar Expo in Verona to Intersolar in Munich and from Foren in Neptun to RoEnergy in Bucharest, the key players and other experts of the Romanian Renewable Energy market keep talking about ANRE and its announcements, plus their information for the upcoming changes in the emergency ordinance 88 / 2011, the law for Renewable Energy production in Romania.

It looks like we will have 3 important additions coming up. The first one was already announced and the other two are supposed to become public this week:

1. The obligation for utility companies etc. to buy green certificates will become quarterly and not annual.

So far the utility companies etc. are obliged to cover their quota of green certificates once per year. This creates a rather “unbalanced” situation in the market, due to the fact that the transactions are sealed just once and the rest 11 months only a very small number of them are being sold. This change was announced during the Foren event (and discussed since April or earlier). If  it will be voted, the market will advance to a new level. More solid track records will be created and the cash flow of RES projects will be drastically improved.

2. The creation of a Guarantee Fund, which will buy all the potentially unsold green certificates in the future.

In 2015, 2016 and 2017 we expect the number of green certificates to reach the planned quota for the country. This means that there is the risk that some investors will not sell their certificates and lose their income. You may say “this is the risk of investing, we don’t care”. This is a point of view. But all the modern countries in the world try to make sure that once an  investment is made in their territory, the rules of the game have to be stable for a long period of time. It was heavily anticipated during the last weeks that a Guarantee Fund will be created, in order  to purchase the excessive green certificates (at the minimum price), if any. This will provide security for the whole system and somehow “massage” the bankers hands, and initiate them to sign the financing of projects easier than today.

3. The clarification of the subvention scheme for Photovoltaic plants’ green certificates.

Almost everyone I have discussed this issue with says, unofficially, that the green certificates granted for 1 MWh of PV production will remain at 6 until 01.01.2014. But there are (very) few people who claim that they will be reduced to 4 as of 01.01.2013. I personally tend to believe that the first scenario is much more probable, even if ANRE may publish a report stating that the PV sector is oversaturated.

The first modification sounds certain. The second one is considered also very probable. Let’s wait to see what will happen for the third one as well. We expect to have a first feedback during the following period.

What is your opinion?