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Sourcing energy from renewables a ‘major strategic opportunity’, Climate Group report finds

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Large, European companies have concluded that deriving all of their energy demand from renewable sources represent a “major strategic opportunity” moving forward, according to a new report published by The Climate Group has found.

The ‘Consumer-led Energy Transition’ report, prepared by E3G and published today by The Climate Group, has been compiled to provide input into the ongoing evaluation of European Union energy legislation such as the Renewable Energy Directive.

Various members of The RE100 initiative, established by The Climate Group to support businesses wishing to source their power demand from renewable generators, contributed to the report, also found that renewables now offered increased cost control and security of supply.

The report did however find that businesses had found it difficult to achieve sourcing 100% of their power from renewables and suggested a raft of changes necessary to stimulate increased adoption, in particular to the Renewable Energy Directive.

Among those changes include the establishment of basic design principles for national renewable energy frameworks, which would then facilitate further market integration of renewables, and additional principles which would allow customers the “enforceable right” to individually or collectively produce and consumer their own electricity.

The Climate Group also suggested a number of market design changes, including a wish list comprising proposals for free trade in renewable electricity across the EU, the promotion of a more flexible power system to encourage demand response and storage technologies.

It has also suggested that a renewable electricity procurement template be designed by corporate buyers, so that it can then be used at various other small and large consumption sites spread across jurisdictions.

Damian Ryan, acting CEO at The Climate Group, said that more businesses were committing to climate action because it “makes business sense”.

“But to ensure that many more are able to reach 100% renewable power, governments at all levels need to set or raise the ambition of long-term supportive policies. The Climate Group wants to help to drive practical solutions that will unlock much-needed low carbon investment to deliver a prosperous, zero-emissions economy,” Ryan added.

His sentiments were echoed by the report’s author Simon Skillings, who said: “Renewable energy is the future and if the European Union wants to retain its competitive edge it must unleash its potential before it’s too late. That means making it cheap and easy to procure renewable electricity to empower its energy consumers.”

The Renewable Energy Directive is one of a number of documents forming the next Energy Union Package, due to put forward on 30 November 2016. However a draft version of the RED was leaked to Alice Stollmeyer earlier this week and then published on her blog.

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