ERRA and MEDREG held a joint technical workshop on regulatory sandboxing that allowed to investigate scope of experimentation in the energy transition process in December 2022, in Istanbul, Türkiye.
The workshop was moderated by Ms. Andrijana Nelkova-Chuchuk, who is both ERRA Presidium Member and Commissioner at Energy and Water Services Regulatory Commission of North Macedonia.
Valuable speakers made presentations on regulatory sandboxes;
Dr Klaus KUBECZKO (Austria – Senior Expert Advisor, Center for Innovation Systems & Policy, Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH) set the stage for the day by elaborating on sandboxes, regulatory experimenting and the role of regulatory authorities while making 2 key points on regulatory experimentation:
- regulatory experimenting, although akin to pilot projects, has various forms and formats going beyond conventional innovation projects,
- regulatory experimenting is mostly about learning.
Dr Harald PROIDL (Austria – Director, Renewables and Energy Efficiency, E-Control) started his presentation with giving details of the “Energie Frei Raum” funding program launched in 2019 by the Austrian Ministry to support testing of new technologies and business models in renewable energy, storage and energy efficiency. He then gave a brief explanation about the approval procedure of regulatory sandboxes in Austria and mentioned results and lessons learnt from the sandboxing process.
The Hungarian case study was presented by Mr. Tamás GYARMATI (Hungary - Head of Unit, Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority, MEKH) where he also gave account of the new initiative that is supported and encouraged by MEKH – the Energy Innovation Centre (EIC).
Mr. Ivan FAUCHEUX (France – Commissioner, Energy Regulatory Commission, CRE) stated that in the field of energy, Energy-Climate Law introduced a system of regulatory experimentation for the first time in 2019. He also gave a comprehensive description of the project ‘Reflex’ which is testing the flexibility options to optimise sizing of the network in order to incorporate more renewable energy and is conducted by a distribution system operator.
Mr. Luca LO SCHIAVO (Italy – Deputy Director, Regulatory Authority for Energy, Networks and Environment, ARERA) started his presentation with the foundations for ARERA’s work were laid in the 2010 CEER document which had provided 10 recommendations on innovation. He then elaborated the regulatory sandboxing process. He gave the example of the main policy message from the ISGAN Regulatory Sandbox 2.0 Project which is “there is no “one size fits all” model for experimenting”. He concluded that policy makers and regulatory authorities will choose from the regulatory toolbox in line with their needs and that sandbox programs and regulatory experiments can in fact represent two extremes of the spectrum.
The last presenter of the day was Ms. Jessie Ciulla (USA – Senior Associate, RMI), who named the four main areas which the regulatory authorities can influence being:
- electricity and heat through the deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency,
- end-use electrification,
- energy access through financing incentives and grid improvement.
She emphasized that regulatory sandboxes make it possible to create customer-centric innovation. She finished her presentation with US examples.
The program also included a roundtable discussion on prospects and key challenges of regulatory sandboxing.
Access the full summary report of this last Workshop of 2022 below:
Workshop presentations are available to ERRA Members on the Workshop Website.