[75] Energy services, not carriers

Or rather, a market that does not consider the energy carrier as an autonomous black box, but as a complex, integrated, digitally controlled system of input and output that serves to deliver energy services.

In the electricity grid 2.0, participants can both generate and consume electricity (prosumers) and monetize the flexibility in their energy demand. To make this possible in a direct and uncomplicated way,

  • an advanced standardized consumer interface should be developed;
  • regulation, tarification and taxation should be thought out according to business models that are advantageous to all parties.

[19] Energy services – promising and challenging

The problem with energy savings (so-called ‘negawatts’), is that they are difficult to measure. Metering technology has improved significantly since 2011, but the problem of the construction of a solid baseline remains. Another challenge is that some investments into energy efficiency, especially in buildings, have long payback times, and both ESCOs and building operators may be reluctant to enter into such long-term contracts.

As a result, a 2017 report from JRC finds that the European ESCO market is falling somewhat short of expectations. The total EU market was estimated at €2.4 billion ESCO revenue in 2015, with a forecasted growth to €2.8 billion in 2024 at a 1.7% compound annual growth rate.