The Rise of Community Energy from Grassroots to Mainstream: The Role of Law and Policy
Journal of Environmental Law, Forthcoming
31 Pages Posted: 29 Aug 2017 Last revised: 8 Feb 2019
Date Written: August 13, 2018
In recent years, national and subnational law- and policy-makers have adopted measures to stimulate decentralised renewable energy generation, turning communities into prominent actors in the energy transition. The recast of the EU Renewable Energy Directive follows this trend, prompting all EU Member States to adopt measures to spearhead community energy. Yet to date, only a handful of ‘pioneer’ EU Member States – most saliently Denmark, Germany and the UK – have accrued significant experience with the mainstreaming of community energy. This article reflects on the role of law and policy in turning grassroots community action into a mainstream means for renewable energy generation. It unpacks the regulatory questions underlying the notion of community energy, looking at how these have been addressed in pioneer Member States. This analysis aims to deliver greater understanding of community energy, to highlight gaps in our knowledge of it, and to identify an agenda for further enquiry.
Keywords: community energy, renewable energy, energy transition, climate change
JEL Classification: K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation