The Energiewende As a Public Value Challenge for German DSOs

31 Pages Posted: 16 Feb 2018 Last revised: 9 Jul 2018

See all articles by Marga Edens

Marga Edens

Tilburg University, Tilburg Law School, Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC)

Date Written: February 15, 2018

Abstract

As the implementation of the Energiewende in Germany is making itself increasingly felt in the distribution networks, this paper explores how the growing amount of distributed renewable energy impacts the Distribution System Operator (DSO) and its responsibility for public values, such as the availability, affordability, and environmental sustainability of the electricity infrastructure. Although the German government’s aim is twofold, promote the energy transition and at the same time maintain a balance between the energy-related public values, it turns out that regulatory disconnection limits the realization of environmental sustainability as a public value, particularly where the Energiewende is taking place: at the distribution level. More room for environmental sustainability as a public value would help German DSOs play their pivotal role in the Energiewende. Interviews and an online survey with energy sector representatives demonstrate that DSOs need more legal leeway, enabling them to give more consideration to environmental sustainability and make public value trade-offs that should be based on clear criteria laid down by law and decree-law and decided upon in a transparent process.

Keywords: DSO, public values, energy transition, environmental sustainability, regulatory disconnection

JEL Classification: K10, K23, Q01

Suggested Citation

Edens, Marga, The Energiewende As a Public Value Challenge for German DSOs (February 15, 2018). TILEC Discussion Paper No. 2018-009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3124172 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3124172

Marga Edens (Contact Author)

Tilburg University, Tilburg Law School, Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC) ( email )

Warandelaan 2
Netherlands

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
31
Abstract Views
292
PlumX Metrics