Published on September 16th, 2015 | by Joshua S Hill4
Policy Shifts Drive Movement In EY’s Latest Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index
September 16th, 2015 by Joshua S Hill
Shifts in renewable energy policy is the defining factor of the latest EY Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index, published Wednesday.
The Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index is a quarterly ranking of 40 countries based on the attractiveness of their renewable energy investment and deployment opportunities, according to a number of macro, energy market, and technology-specific indicators. Published by EY, a global advisory service with decades worth of experience, the Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI) is one of the premier guidelines for determining the vertical movement of a country’s renewable energy policy.
For the visually minded, EY’s “At a glance …” infographic detailing the major changes to the RECAI can be found below, but a few important notes are worth highlighting briefly. (Several more in-depth pieces will follow detailing some of the top stories and regional discussions stemming from the RECAI.)
For the first time since the RECAI was established in 2003, the United Kingdom has dropped out of the top 10. Specifically, according to EY’s accompanying press release, “a wave of policy revisions to reduce or remove support for onshore wind and solar projects in the UK threaten to paralyse the industry” — which should come as no real surprise to those who have been following along.
But the UK wasn’t the only country to fall in the RECAI, with several countries suffering negatively from policy changes, including Germany, Spain, and Australia — each of which fell, to be replaced by increasingly more attractive markets, such as Brazil and Chile. Brazil especially, which stepped up into 8th place in the top 10, has regularly been highlighted lately for the growth of its renewable energy industry. Brazil and Chile represent the “hottest” of Latin America’s markets, cementing their respective positions in the RECAI top 10.
“Policy changes still have an immense impact on renewable energy deployment and the RECAI movements reveal some policymakers are listening to market signals more than others,” said Ben Warren, EY’s Global Power & Utilities Corporate Finance Leader and RECAI Chief Editor. “In today’s world, where the majority of the population is facing some form of energy crisis, public support for low-carbon energy solutions and the increasingly compelling economics, flexibility and scalability of renewables cannot be ignored. Policymakers must recognize the strategic imperative of a diverse energy mix to help address economic and societal goals, as well as environmental ones.”
However, maybe the most interesting change from an outsiders point of view is that of the top two spots, with China and the US swapping places to place the US back atop the pile. EY highlights “President Barack Obama’s much-awaited Clean Power Plan (CPP)” as the primary reason for the United States’ reascension, which it says “sends a strong message of accountability at the state-level for the shift to a low-carbon economy and is expected to galvanize a significant increase [in] renewable energy investment over the next 15 years.”
“The CPP is the most comprehensive, far-reaching and flexible emissions legislation in the US to date and gives a clear steer on the country’s long-term energy strategy,” Warren continued. “Targets alone will not construct new projects, but long-term visibility increases investor confidence that demand is there, and maintains momentum as we hurtle towards universal grid parity for renewables.”
With such an in-depth report, one article does not account for the scope of what has been reported, so keep your eyes peeled to CleanTechnica over the next few days for further analysis.