Page 43 - European Energy Innovation - Spring 2016 publication
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Spring 2016 European Energy Innovation     43


to other networks are very few,         through a sound regulatory                 unnecessary extra costs. Any proposal
distribution networks are usually       methodology covering both traditional      of creating new regulated entities such
characterised by a large number         and innovation-related assets.             as separate and regulated data hubs
of customers, self-generators and       Regulatory schemes must incentivise        should be carefully assessed to make
larger-scale (distributed) generators.  DSOs to be efficient, to deliver           sure that the benefits accruing from
The connection of a greater number      long-term investment according to a        new solutions are truly superior to any
of generation resources, such as        predictable and consistent regulatory      resulting increase in the cost and/or
renewables, to satisfy demand requires  framework and to make efficient            complexity of the system.
substantial growth in the size and      trade-offs between active system
complexity of distribution grids.       management and physical grid               CONCLUSIONS
                                        reinforcement.                             DSOs are key players in enabling
As the technical contact point for                                                 a successful energy transition. The
customers, DSOs are in a unique         Performing these new roles will            evolution of the energy sector towards
position to meet their needs and        evidently lead to extra costs related,     an efficient and smarter system will
choices in terms of connection,         inter alia, to the introduction of smart   only be possible if DSOs play an
quality, security and continuity of     grid solutions and the increasing          active coordinating role between
power supply. Hence, DSOs are           complexity of data handling. The           all market participants, facilitating
ideally suited to manage very large     new energy reality requires energy         markets and services in a neutral and
numbers of connection points and        regulators to ensure that all these        non-discriminatory manner. For this
to balance local grids. DSO activities  changes benefit customers and other        to happen, DSOs must operate within
must therefore be separate from - and   network customers. Policy, regulations,    a consistent regulatory framework,
complementary to - TSO ones, bearing    roles and procedures have to be set        where competition is encouraged and
in mind that DSOs are the only players  taking into account efficiency and non-    a level playing field is guaranteed for
capable of exploiting the benefits      discrimination. The new setup must         all market participants. l
of a local approach in terms of grid    make sure that costs are minimised
management and customer support.        whilst competition is nurtured and a         Contact details:
                                        level playing field is guaranteed for all    Anamaria Olaru
RECOGNISING AND INCENTIVISING           market participants.                         Press & Media Relations
THE NEW ROLE OF DSOS                                                                 Tel.: +32 2 515 10 71
To meet the challenges ahead, national  Amongst growing concerns about     
energy regulators must make sure        high electricity tariffs across the EU,
that DSOs are properly incentivised     it is important to limit and avoid any
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