Policy Brief: Bellona’s position on the upcoming Grids Action Plan

Empowering Europe’s Green Future: A Grid Action Plan 

In our journey towards climate neutrality, the widespread adoption of renewable energy is of utmost importance. Not only must renewables serve existing sectors powered by fossil fuels, but they must also accommodate new applications where direct electrification is the most effective path to decarbonisation. 

To facilitate this transition, the European grid is poised for a substantial evolution in size and operation. Its role is pivotal in shifting from a centralised, fossil-based system to a decentralised, renewable-centric model, where demand must flexibly adapt to the intermittency of renewable sources. 

Following the discussions at the high-level forum, “Future of our Grids: Accelerating Europe’s energy transition”, on the 7th of September, the European Commission has announced they will publish a Grid Action Plan at the end of November. Bellona Europa welcomes this initiative but emphasises key criteria for its credibility: 

Clear Objective for Direct Electrification: The action plan must articulate a distinct objective for direct electrification, offering grid operators the regulatory certainty necessary for strategic infrastructure investments. 

Addressing Bottlenecks: Tackling slow permitting processes, a scarcity of skilled workforce, and insufficient supply chains for components and critical raw materials is crucial for grid deployment. 

Flexibility Integration: The plan should empower the grid to provide flexibility to the system, ensuring seamless adaptation to the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources. 

Financial Environment for Investment: A robust financial environment is essential to encourage investments in grid expansion and optimisation, fostering a resilient and adaptive energy infrastructure. 

Regulator Alignment with Decarbonization Goals: Aligning the regulator’s mandate with the broader decarbonisation goals is essential. 

 Read our full set of recommendations below.

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