Distributed energy resources in Sweden : The challenges faced by market actors that are developing business models
Sammanfattning: The electricity sector has traditionally been constructed for large scale generation and distribution from the high-voltage to the low-voltage network. Transition is however underway; intermittent power generation has become less expensive and nuclear power plants are set to close down. A key issue is that intermittent power generation is by definition weather dependent, hence it cannot be planned. Smart grid solutions have the possibility to meet variations in electricity supply and demand and make use of output from intermittent renewable energy through a broad range of products and services, e.g. energy storage and adjustment of electricity production and consumption in strategic times for residential, commercial or industrial end users. Even if the technological solutions exist, these demand side resources have still not been integrated to the market to the extent that is needed. Since they are of such key importance, there is an urgent need to understand the barriers in current market structures as well as to identify opportunities and innovative business models that can bring these resources to the market. An interview study was conducted in order to provide an understanding of the challenges individual companies encounter as they develop business models to integrate their product and service offering into the electricity markets. Additional data was gathered through a literature review of academic papers, market reports and law propositions. The results of the study showed that the business models are currently undergoing stages of 'trial-and-error' to accommodate the specific needs of the electric power system. Actors are trying to prove to the electricity sector that distributed energy resources have a purpose to serve in the electric power system. The actors of these technologies seek to explore various types of value propositions, and sources of income, which to some extent are centered around the sharing of costs and resources with end customers. Furthermore, it would be desirable to align the incentives with the particular distribution network's needs and context to form the basis for the choice of capacity reinforcement. There are clear operational advantages of smart grid technologies, which also reduce profitability related to network capacity. This has to be taken into account and evaluated to encourage cooperation between the parties in the electricity sector.
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