How to make a European integrated market in small and isolated electricity systems? The case of the Canary Islands
This paper presents a geographic dimension not often studied in the dynamics of creating an internal market for electricity within the European Union, namely the case of small European electricity systems like those found on the Greek islands of Cyprus and Crete. Our question, then, is how to achieve a suitable internal market for electricity in small and isolated systems. To address this issue, we identify the main problems to be overcome by introducing a methodology in which the Canary Islands experience is taken as a case study for understanding the challenges in creating an "EU-like market for electricity". Our results show that the design of the vertical industrial structure and the figure of the grid operator and its attributes are key features for the proper operation of any electrical system. We also stress the minor roles of other possible options to achieve this EU-compatible market by highlighting first, in the wholesale market, the call-for-tender solution to introduce more generation and the risk of using safety requirements as barriers to entry in these small markets, and second, in the supply activities, the potential problems of an improperly regulated tariff scheme.
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