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Dumbrăveanu: We are working on a legislative framework related to citizens’ energy communities

13 September 2023

The National Regulatory Authority in the field of Energy is considering the development of a set of regulations and a guide that will allow active customers to act on the market and establish themselves in energy communities of citizens, said Claudiu Dumbrăveanu, general director with ANRE, on Tuesday.

“We are working on the development of a legislative framework to detail and clarify aspects related to this topic, and I mean the active customers and the citizens’ energy communities. (…) We are considering the development of a set of regulations and a guide that allow active customers to act on the market and form themselves into energy communities of citizens. They, according to the law and according to the directives, have rights. We have configured several models of energy communities, but there are more of them,” said Dumbrăveanu, quoted by Agerpres.

He presented four models of energy community of citizens. The first is that of a community made up of several prosumers (such as the case of a residential complex, a neighborhood or a village, where several citizens have installed photovoltaic installations) who want to form an energy community in order to -maximize their well-being by consuming the energy produced, and the surplus can be injected into the network.

“Obviously, the ultimate goal of a community is not necessarily profit, but if the profit appears, it can either be shared or invested in energy efficiency, in strengthening the thermal insulation of buildings or in storage. And here we imagined this model in which several prosumers they associate and constitute themselves as a community that provides to the members of the community, as a supplier. The community buys part of the energy and sells the surplus on the market. For this, it is necessary to establish this community as a person responsible for balancing and contacting with the distribution operator. In this case, the community should register as a legal entity and obtain the necessary licenses to act as a supplier or as a producer. (…) We are considering some facilities that we could grant when obtaining licenses for the supply and operation of production facilities,” explained the director of ANRE.

Another model presented by Dumbrăveanu is that of a joint investment, as for example the tenants of a block who together make an investment and can act as a community or act as an active client. However, they must establish a way of dividing the results, percentage-wise, according to the contribution of each one. In this case there is no need for a license, because a supplier is used.

The third model presented by the ANRE official is also of a community that makes a joint investment, but which requires a license and can participate in the market.

The last case, which brought some challenges, according to Claudiu Dumbrăveanu, is the one regarding energy sharing.

“We have thought about some sharing mechanisms and formulas and how we will detail them. Energy sharing formulas can be made by community members or ANRE can recommend a sharing formula. In this case it is need for cooperation with the distribution operator who, against an obvious cost, should integrate the energy produced and realize, based on meter readings or profiles, the shared energy situation and, further, a rather complex calculation in which it determines the energy consumed in the meter and from which the energy received from the community’s installation is subtracted and here it gets a little complicated…,” stated the director of ANRE.

On the other hand, Claudiu Dumbrăveanu emphasized that, in his opinion, the prosumer is a particular case of the active customer, the active customer being that customer who produces his energy and who has the right to sell it, share it with other customers, participate to the market, or to rent to a third party, who is not an active customer.

According to the data presented by him, currently in Romania there are approximately 80,000 prosumers, with an installed power of approximately 1,100 megawatts and it is estimated that by the end of the year this installed power will reach 1,400 megawatts.

“That’s why there are some challenges that the electrical systems and networks have to pass well, namely congestion management, voltage regulation services, and others,” he pointed out.

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