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Concept of “Green” Renewable Energy Certification in Russia


 

A “Green” Renewable Energy Certificate (“Green” Certificate) confirms the fact that a fixed quantity of energy has been produced from renewable energy source. The “Green” Certificate’s life cycle includes the stages: issuing, transfer, and special-purpose use maintained with redemption.
“Green” Certificates can be issued for electrical and thermal energy to compass the following purposes:
tracking production, supply (selling) and consumption of renewable energy,
guaranteeing origin of energy from renewable energy source,
submitting disclosure information toward the nature of energy – both produced and supplied (sold) and consumed,
affirming the rights for support within specific renewable energy supporting schemes conceded by the Russian legislation,
receiving tax allowances, set by the legislation, and various compensatory payments,
inter-party accounting under transfer of renewable energy technologies, in the frame of the legislation in effect, or within special contracts and agreements,
estimating efficiency of renewable energy technologies in the context of tasks of energy save and promotion of energy efficiency,
gathering information about greenhouse gas mitigation on the base of renewable energy  technologies, e.g. in the frameworks of projects and transactions in the line of the Kyoto Protocol.
Thus, the basic function of “Green” Certification is the function of confirmation. Owing to performing this function, “Green” Certificates may be used (and properly redeemed) for the most diverse purposes. The issuing of “Green” Certificates itself should not be linked to a particular scheme of support for renewable energy as well as to a commodity, financial or other system. Therefore, “Green” Certification as an instrumentality in the formation of renewable energy stimulating mechanisms represents a means to compass the purposes shown above (or a “flexibility mechanism”).
To introduce “Green” Certificates as such an instrumentality for supporting schemes, in the process of their issuing, transfer and use (redemption) one can provide some conditions, as described below.
• The fact of production of energy from renewable energy source is confirmed with the use of the procedures for accreditation of production devices and expert examination of technologies, meeting the up-to-date standards.
• The Issuing Body declares that it has no financial interests at the production devices and guarantees the reliability of the submitted information.
•  A “Green” Certificate fixes an additional “green” (ecological) value of renewable energy for the State and society, which is expressed in definite requisites of renewable energy and rights of the Certificate owner; this value might have its cost, fixed or marketable, and be assigned as well.
•  The public distribution of information about production, supply (selling) and consumption of renewable energy is conceded legislatively and/or accepted in public opinion if a physical body or a juridical unit, which distributes such information, is able to submit the proper amount of “Green” Certificates.
• Assigning the rights or requisites of energy fixed by “Green” Certificates from producers of renewable energy to producers of any other energy or between producers of renewable energy from each other before the redemption disables the foremost to presenting their energy publicly as renewable.
Transfer or selling of “Green” Certificates before their redemption automatically results in the assignment of related rights and requisites.
• Premiums, exemptions, compensations and other similar advantages within the special and other renewable energy supporting schemes (mandatory and voluntary) are granted both for producers, suppliers (traders) or consumers of renewable energy in accord with the amounts of their “Green” Certificates, being submitted, and producers, suppliers (traders) or consumers of any other energy also in accord with the amounts of their “Green” Certificates, being submitted.
• In case of combined use of different schemes for support of renewable energy (both mandatory and voluntary), an integrated “Green” Certificate is applied, provided a single or the main designation for the Certificate can be determined.
• The redemption of “Green” Certificate makes it impossible to use the Certificate for the purposes other than that, according to which this Certificate has been redeemed.
In view of the level of preparedness of the domestic conditions (the consideration degree), data about foreign experiences and necessity to accumulate own experiences, it is recommended at the first stage to use “Green” Certificates as an element of grid-connected electric power systems, being contributed to the evolvement of the Unified Energy System of Russia (RAO UES), e.g. commissioning production devices based on renewable energy sources, and to the development of local electrical networks.
Factored in the policy of reformation of the Russian electric power industry (competitively),  extension of requirements to the social growth of corporations as well as general requirements to the product stewardship (especially, for exporters), “Green” Certificates could be issued in the most effective way:
Within a mandatory scheme with fixed premiums above the market price (price increments). Such a scheme is established at the level of the Federal Law on support of use of renewable energy sources;
In order to develop voluntary corporate obligations toward the consumption of renewable energy. Corporations could procure “Green” Certificates for technologies, both supported and not supported within the above mentioned scheme. In the latter case the Certificates are earmarked. The affirmation of meeting obligations may become the main designation for the Certificates, when implementing of “point-to-point” Certificates would allow to save in creation of the Certification System;
Considering voluntary and/or mandatory “green” (ecological) labelling of exported products. This subject is studied in co-operation with responsible ecological organisations.
The application of “Green” Certificates for local electrical networks may assume establishing the Institution of Persons to on-site guarantee the reliability of information about producing electrical energy, duly liable for the distortion of this information. Or else, it may assume establishing territorial systems of  “Green” Certification with the territorial status for the Certificates.
By establishing any additional renewable energy supporting schemes for renewable electricity (both Federal, regional and local), calculations of the minimal purchase costs of “Green” Certificates and concurrent penalties, compensations and so on, correspond with related ones within already accepted mandatory scheme for support of renewable energy.
To reduce the cost of projects directed at the development and implementation of the Russian “Green” Renewable Energy Certification System, to increase the rating of Russian “Green” Certificates and to provide possibilities to trade with them on other countries’ markets, the Russian “Green” Certification System utilises experiences and afterwards (when corresponding standards and conditions in Russia are furnished), joins the international Renewable Energy Certificate System (RECS) and the system of related international standards and conditions. In such a case, the Russian “Green” Certification System must accept standards and conditions only of the voluntary international certification of renewable electrical energy, namely, standards and conditions, which are not associated with the European Directive’s documents at first hand.
Among the latter are standards and conditions, stimulating commissioning the modern renewable energy technologies and the effective combined use of renewable and non-renewable sources of electrical energy.
In parallel with the development of the Russian “Green” Certification System for electrical energy, topics of “Green” Certification of heat energy are studied. It is believed that CHP (combined heat and power) certification of renewable energy is promising, taking into account the estimations of increase in energy efficiency on the base of a cogeneration system and ones of mitigation of carbon dioxide emissions.
Pursuant to the accumulated international experiences, heat “Green” Certificates are issued for autonomous production devices, while CHP certificates are issued for both autonomous and grid-connected ones.
The interaction between the system of “Green” Certification and the system of “carbon” certification in line with the Kyoto Protocol is permitted only after official launching of both systems.
The rules and procedures for the Russian “Green” Certification System harmonised with the international rules and procedures are to be established by the Government of the Russian Federation.

 

RusTREC:  Consortium; and the Steering Committee