IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The evolution of flexibility mechanisms for achieving European renewable energy targets 2020--ex-ante evaluation of the principle mechanisms


  • Klessmann, Corinna


In December 2008, the European Council and the European Parliament agreed on a final compromise for a new European renewable energy directive. One of the most debated issues prior to this compromise was the design of "target flexibility mechanisms", which should allow member states with low or expensive renewable energy potential to partly fulfil their national renewable energy target in other countries. This article traces back the political discussion that has led to the evolution of the different flexibility options. It then evaluates the most prominent flexibility mechanisms against a set of qualitative criteria. It concludes that free or restricted certificate trade based on guarantees of origin (GOs) - as proposed earlier by the European Commission - is not a viable option due to some "knockout" criteria, despite other potential advantages. The mechanisms that have replaced GO trade in the final compromise - joint projects, joint support schemes and statistical transfer between member states - provide less flexibility, but score better against a number of other important criteria. The crucial question for the coming years is how their utilisation can be facilitated. One first step might be that proactive member states define open design issues for implementing the mechanisms.

Suggested Citation

  • Klessmann, Corinna, 2009. "The evolution of flexibility mechanisms for achieving European renewable energy targets 2020--ex-ante evaluation of the principle mechanisms," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4966-4979, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:37:y:2009:i:11:p:4966-4979

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Klessmann, Corinna & Nabe, Christian & Burges, Karsten, 2008. "Pros and cons of exposing renewables to electricity market risks--A comparison of the market integration approaches in Germany, Spain, and the UK," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(10), pages 3646-3661, October.
    2. Munoz, Miquel & Oschmann, Volker & David Tabara, J., 2007. "Harmonization of renewable electricity feed-in laws in the European Union," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 3104-3114, May.
    3. Atle Midttun & Mari Hegg Gundersen & Anne Louise Koefoed, 2004. "Greening of Nordic Electricity Industry: Policy Convergence and Diversity," Energy & Environment, , vol. 15(4), pages 633-656, July.
    4. Toke, David, 2008. "The EU Renewables Directive--What is the fuss about trading?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 2991-2998, August.
    5. Ragwitz, Mario & Resch, Gustav & Schleich, Joachim, 2007. "Increased auctioning in the EU ETS and trade in guarantees of origin for renewables: a comparison of the impact on power sector producer rents," Working Papers "Sustainability and Innovation" S8/2007, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Klinge Jacobsen, Henrik & Pade, Lise Lotte & Schröder, Sascha Thorsten & Kitzing, Lena, 2014. "Cooperation mechanisms to achieve EU renewable targets," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 345-352.
    2. Haas, Reinhard & Resch, Gustav & Panzer, Christian & Busch, Sebastian & Ragwitz, Mario & Held, Anne, 2011. "Efficiency and effectiveness of promotion systems for electricity generation from renewable energy sources – Lessons from EU countries," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 2186-2193.
    3. Sepehr Ghazinoory & Fatemeh Saghafi & Sahar Kousari, 2016. "Ex-post evaluation of scenarios: the case of nanotechnology societal impacts," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 50(3), pages 1349-1365, May.
    4. repec:eee:rensus:v:80:y:2017:i:c:p:519-530 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Klessmann, Corinna & Rathmann, Max & de Jager, David & Gazzo, Alexis & Resch, Gustav & Busch, Sebastian & Ragwitz, Mario, 2013. "Policy options for reducing the costs of reaching the European renewables target," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 390-403.
    6. repec:aen:journl:ej38-si1-argentiero is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Klessmann, Corinna & Lamers, Patrick & Ragwitz, Mario & Resch, Gustav, 2010. "Design options for cooperation mechanisms under the new European renewable energy directive," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 4679-4691, August.
    8. Boute, Anatole & Willems, Patrick, 2012. "RUSTEC: Greening Europe's energy supply by developing Russia's renewable energy potential," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 618-629.
    9. Kost, Christoph & Pfluger, Benjamin & Eichhammer, Wolfgang & Ragwitz, Mario, 2011. "Fruitful symbiosis: Why an export bundled with wind energy is the most feasible option for North African concentrated solar power," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(11), pages 7136-7145.
    10. repec:eco:journ2:2017-04-08 is not listed on IDEAS


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:37:y:2009:i:11:p:4966-4979. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.