2. Policy Background and Introduction EDSEP
2.1. Policy Background
2.2. Executive Order ‘Decentral, Sustainable Electricity Production Experiments’
- the project grids up to 500 users. In this case, the grid is owned by the project and has only one connection to the public grid;
- the larger experiments up to 10,000 users and 5 MW generative capacity, usually in cooperation with the grid operator. The grid operator remains owner of the grid. These experiments are concerned with balancing the electricity grid through peak shaving, and dynamic electricity tariffs.
3. EDSEP Experimenters As Decision-Making Unit in a Polycentric System
4.1. Case Study
5.1. The Polycentric Constellation of Actors Under the EDSEP
5.2. The Functioning of the Experiments in Their Polycentric Environment
- derogation from the prohibition to carry out DSO tasks;
- derogation from the obligation to have a supply permit;
- freedom to determine grid tariffs, tariff structures, and requirements as set by ACM. ACM only checks the method by which the tariffs are determined, not the tariff itself;
- derogation from certain specific rules that apply to data processing (which are mainly about the requirement to participate in sector-wide discussions to align data related procedures to the benefit of the consumer);
- derogation from certain specific rules regarding transparency and liquidity of the energy market (which are mainly about the right of the government to create additional requirements regarding supply conditions and information provision in case of an illiquid market); and,
- derogation from rules regarding metering device requirements.
- Grid connection and DSO transport costs for project grids: A one-time saving on the grid connection costs can be realized. Experimenters that newly construct a grid can save costs, because one high-volume connection to the regional grid is cheaper than the sum total of connections for individual dwellings to the regional grid. This is a financial incentive to balance the energy on project grids, because, the smaller the connection with the regional grid required, the lower the connection costs. Furthermore, the periodical transport costs that need to be paid to the DSO are also lower when the capacity of the connection is lower. This can result in a rather significant saving as the DSO costs are about 1/3 of the total electricity bill.To give an example: The total of the DSO tariffs for a household with an average 3 × 25 A connection at the DSO Stedin € 230.36 (other DSOs do not differ much in their tariffs) . Schoonschip annually pays € 6759.74 according to their business model, which comes down to an average of € 225.32 per dwelling. As this is an all-electric neighborhood, where the electricity consumption is higher, the balancing brings these dwellings back to rather average DSO costs).However, if dwellings do not have their own connection to the grid, they miss out on the annual levy rebate for a part of the energy tax.
- DSO transport costs for large grids: the periodical transport costs on a large grid can be reduced by creating a virtual connection through a shared code for a group of participants that cooperate to create balance. The lower the required peak capacity, the lower the transport costs. Additional costs can be saved by helping the DSO to realize a flat usage profile (using the same capacity of the grid throughout the day), because this has value to the DSO. However, sufficiently adjustable capacity is needed for this.
- Energy tariff of large net: If the experiment can realize the aforementioned flat usage profile, it can potentially negotiate a lower tariff for the energy that it does not generate with its own capacity and needs to buy from an external supplier.
- Fixed supplier costs: Most energy suppliers charge a fixed supply tariff. If the experiment (project grid or large experiment) has one connection, these costs are lower than when each individual user would need to conclude a contract with the supplier. However, costs need to be made to measure the usage within the project and bill the participants.
5.2.3. Local Autonomy
5.2.4. Political Representation
6. Conclusions and Discussion
6.1. Lessons Learnt from Participative Experimentation under the EDSEP
6.2. Theoretical Reflection on Polycentricity
6.3. Final Remarks
Conflicts of Interest
|Year||Name||Type (Project/Large)||Legal Entity||Project Goals||Scale|
|2015||Parq Green||P||HOA||Collective PV, sustainable heat||292 recreational houses|
|Experiment DDE Collegepark Zwijsen||P||HOA||Generations, EMS, tariff differentiation, cogeneration||115 apartments in renovated school|
|Endona EXP||L||Coop||Generation, cooperation with biodigester, supply to members, increasing direct usage, EMS, storage.||47 with EMS and towards 5000 members in 10 years|
|2016||Schoonschip||P||HOA||EMS, generation, batteries, heat pumps, heat storage in buffer and smart appliances||46 water houses|
|Noordstraat 111 Tilburg||P||HOA||EMS, generation, smaller grid connection||3 houses in old office (owned)|
|Villa de Verademing||P||Coop||Insulation, generation, smart grid connected to the neighborhood, storage.||18 apartments and 1 city residence|
|Groot Experiment Aardehuizen e.o.||L||HOA||Community battery, EVs, EMS, generation, no gas, smart software dynamic electricity tariffs and demand response, p-2-p.||3 rental and 20 owned|
|Kringloopgemeenschap Bodegraven-Reeuwijk||L||Coop||Generation and determining own tariff||2500 households|
|2017||Republica Papaverweg||P||Coop||EMS, generation, own grid, smart charging with EVs, thermal storage and batteries||Newly built housing block with various accommodations|
|Micro Energy Trading Eemnes||L||Coop||P-2-P, EVs, blockchain, storage, generation, smart software.||100–200 social houses; scaling up to 1500|
|Micro Energy Trading Amersfoort||L||Coop||P-2-P, smart software and block chain||400–600 social houses|
|2018||Duurzame Wijkenergiecentrale Trudo||L||Coop||Generation, EMS, batteries, EV chargers, and tariff differentiation||260 apartments in old industrial building(owned/rental)|
|Smart Grid Groene Mient||L||HOA||Generation, heat pumps, no gas, battery and EVs||33 newly built houses (2017) with communal garden|
|Zeuven heuvels Wezep||P||Coop||EMS, generation, no gas, own grid.||57 newly built houses|
|Smart energy grid Bajeskwartier||L||Coop||Generation, neighborhood battery, EVs, heat pumps and thermal storage, smart grid software platform EMS||950 apartments, school, hotel, 340 student houses and various other services|
|Kleine Duinvallei Katwijk/ Gave Buren||P||Coop||Balancing, joint electricity purchase and distribution, generation.||80 ecological houses|
|Shared energy-mobility community Amersfoort||L||Coop||P-2-P, car sharing with EVs||400–800 houses of housing cooperation|
|2019||Cooperatie zonnepark Bad Noordzee U.A.||P||Coop||Heat pumps, P-2-P, PV, battery storage.||322 recreational houses and a few large use connections|
|Interviewed Actor||Type of Interview|
|Resident of case Schoonschip||Face-to-face|
|Resident of case Aardehuizen||Face-to-face|
|Project developer of case Collegepark Zwijsen||Face-to-face|
|Resident board member and advisor of case Endona||Face-to-face|
|Grid operators from the different territorial jurisdictions, who engage with experiments (3)||Phone (all 3) and one also face-to-face|
|Energy company staff member: EnergieVanOns & Nuts&co. (2)||Phone|
|Policy maker ministry of Economic Affairs||Phone|
|Tax authority staff member|
Consultant in legal, technical and fiscal aspects of renewable energy and energy efficiency. Focus on complex projects and political processes.
|Employee regional umbrella cooperative for supporting local energy cooperatives||Phone|
|Management, ICT, energy and sustainability advisor, creator of web environment with information overview for EDSEP experimenters||Face-to-face|
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|Multi-level||Geographical level of scale (e.g., local, regional, provincial, national, and global)|
|Multi-sectoral||Actors are active in different sectors (e.g., public, semi-public, voluntary, community-based, private, and hybrid kinds)|
|Multi-functional||Different functions are performed by different actors (i.e., specialized units for different functions, such as production, provision, sale, financing, etc.)|
|Multi-type||Several types of jurisdictions are present at the same time (e.g., territorial jurisdictions: nested, multi-purpose jurisdictions; and organizations with functional jurisdiction: specialized, cross-territorial organizations)|
|Control||Formal powers of the decision-making unit within the applicable legal frameworks;|
|Efficiency||Whether the collaboration between the multiple decision-making centres has advantages for getting to the desired outcome;|
|Local autonomy||The power of local stakeholders to be a decision-making unit;|
|Political representation||Inclusion of the political interests of the decision-making unit within the decision- making arrangements.|
|Project type||Large experiment|
|Delineation||The first pilot is in the village of Heeten, but eventually Endona wants to supply the medium voltage grid (part Raalte) with locally produced RE as well as increase the region’s real-time electricity use.|
|Organisation and governance||Endona is an energy cooperative, with the board members registered as its members. This structure has been chosen to keep the decision-making with its day-to-day management. Endona has a large portfolio of projects and is part of several collaborations with grid operators, technology developers and knowledge institutions.|
|Energy system||With some of its partners, Endona installed sea salt batteries. It also implemented household level energy management systems (EMSs) 1 in a neighbourhood with 47 households , and an overarching EMS that uses the inputs from these EMS for neighbourhood level optimisation. Furthermore, Endona developed a solar park with 7200 photovoltaic (PV) panels on 3.5 ha of former agricultural land.|
|Use of EDSEP||The derogation has not yet been effectuated. The cooperative only acts as producer and does balancing experiments that are allowed within the framework of the current Electricity Act.|
At present, the electricity sale is through a cooperative energy company. Endona has not found a suitable business model for being energy supplier, and is investigating the financial risks. In the long run, it wants to take on this role so both the costs and benefits of the energy system are local, and they can possibly offer a lower price to their users because of the integrated management.
|Project type||Large experiment|
|Delineation||The location is at the outskirts of the village of Olst, and is situated in a rural landscape. Incidentally, it is near Heeten, where our first case, Endona, is located. Aardehuizen is in contact with Endona. 23 houses have been built, of which 3 rental social houses, and a community house.|
|Organisation and governance||The project is operated by a HOA and part of a worldwide movement, Earth Ships, which wants to build houses with little environmental impact built from recycled and regionally sourced material. The project’s decision -making system is a sociocracy, which means everyone is involved and informed, although decisions are not made by consensus. The occupants of the rental houses are also a member of the HOA.|
|Energy system||Electricity generation in Aardehuizen is realised by PV-panels on individual houses, while at a later stage collective PV may be placed at a parking lot. The PV panels are privately owned, but the battery will be collectively owned. A collective battery is under investigation, in cooperation with a different higher education institution. No gas connection is present, and because the energy performance coefficient of the buildings is almost zero, the little auxiliary heating that is required is done with heat pumps and wood stoves.|
Next to the direct current (DC) grid, in the future, an inverter will be placed, to make storage possible. Some of the houses have a private EMS. An investigation is ongoing to place EMSs in all houses, which can be connected to a higher level collectively owned EMS. Not all households are connected yet, because not all participants are certain about their privacy. Smart appliances and smart connectors are under investigation.
|Use of EDSEP||At present, the HOA acts as producer.|
Once the collective smart grid is in place, peer-to-peer supply based on dynamic tariffs is planned. At this moment, every household has its own energy supplier. Later, an external cooperative energy company will buy and sell electricity, and handle the administration of the project. Ownership of the grid was not feasible financially as the grid was already in place and the grid was too expensive compared to the benefits of having Aardehuizen managing it.
|Project type||Project grid|
|Delineation||The project consists of a HOA for 115 apartments built in a monumental, former school building in the village Veghel, in the south of the Netherlands.|
|Organisation & governance||The derogation for a project grid has been arranged by the project developer before the houses were sold. The HOA has been set up by the developer so that the residents can use it as a vehicle to decide on matters related to their energy system.|
|Energy system||Collegepark Zwijsen has solar PV and solar collectors. These installations are jointly owned (in Dutch: mandeligheid). All households are connected to one shared large-scale use connection to the national grid. Grid balancing measures will be achieved through individual EMSs for each household. No smart appliances are involved in the project for reasons of privacy. The EMSs, in combination with dynamic tariffs are expected to incentivize the apartment owners to better align demand to supply. Storage will be as heat, not as electricity.|
|Use of EDSEP||The HOA acts as supplier, producer and distributor, but is not a balance responsible party (BRP).|
Project grid management, management of the energy technologies and the administration of energy use for billing are done by an external organization affiliated with the project developer. The apartment owners will pay a fee for these services commissioned by the HOA.
The initial tariff structure is in place and approved by regulator ACM. The occupants are guaranteed to a 3-year zero energy charge, provided their consumption remains within a certain bandwidth. Later on, grid balancing is seen as a way to negotiate better tariffs, and then the HOA will be involved in deciding upon tariffs and new investments.
|Project type||Project grid|
|Delineation||Schoonschip is an HOA of the owners of 46 houseboats and one communal boat in the Amsterdam quarter Buiksloterham, which is a city quarter that develops all kinds of sustainable building projects.|
|Organisation & governance||The project was started by a group of friends, who were later joined by other friends and acquaintances. There are other goals than RE, e.g., wastewater treatment, and the use of recycled building materials. The board of the HOA is responsible for daily decisions. Working groups have been established, e.g., in supervising the building process. These working groups may give presentations about their findings, to keep all members involved. For some decisions it is necessary for all members of the HOA to be present.|
|Energy system||The boats are all-electric, part of a project grid, and connected to the national grid via one connection. The HOA generates electricity through individually owned solar panels. Batteries are placed on each boat, but collectively owned. Shared electric vehicles are part of future plans. The administration and some of the maintenance are done collectively.|
A smart grid is in place, and every household has an EMS. The smart grid is part of a project of a consortium with external expertise, which researches the optimization of smart grid technologies and algorithms . Dynamic tariffs are not foreseen as part of demand management. Efficiency should occur through the smart grid: using and storing electricity when production is high. Eventually, the energy management should result in providing electricity to the main grid at the highest price.
|Use of EDSEP||The HOA acts as supplier, producer and distributor. The administration of electricity use and supply is outsourced to a commercial electricity company, which acts as BRP and provides electricity when a shortage occurs, and buys surplus electricity.|
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