EU: ‘How can renewables permits be simplified?’


The European Commission can expect a bumper electronic postbag over the next three months after asking clean power developers, public bodies and others how to slimline the permitting process for renewables sites.

With the information gathering exercise opened on Tuesday set to run until April 12, the EU executive has also asked how private power purchase agreements (PPAs) – signed directly between renewables site operators and electricity users without incentive payments such as feed-in tariffs – can be made more accessible.

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With solar developers in European nations such as Italy long having complained of the chilling effect convoluted permitting regimes have on PV deployment, the latest call for information is likely to attract a big response.

Although PPAs have boomed in Spain, and begun to crop up in further-flung European markets, the commission on Monday said only eight EU member states had reported on the progress of such unsubsidized clean power contracts as part of their National Energy and Climate Plans, as required by Brussels.

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The commission is seeking input on methods of reducing the duration and complexity of renewable energy PPAs.

The findings of the consultation exercise will inform a guidance document on both issues which the commission is set to deliver by late September.

The call for evidence feedback page can be accessed here.

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