Legal base for energy efficiency reference values and their periodic reviews
The harmonised efficiency reference values are currently established on the basis of Directive 2004/8/EC on the promotion of cogeneration (CHP Directive) by the Commission Implementing Decision 2011/877/EU of 19 December 2011 establishing harmonised efficiency reference values for separate production of electricity and heat in application of Directive 2004/8/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council
Under the CHP Directive the reference values had to be reviewed every four years to take account of technological developments and changes in the distribution of energy sources. Prior to the Commission Implementing Decision 2011/877/EU the reference values were established in Commission Decision 2007/74/EC.
The CHP Directive is to be repealed by Directive 2012/27/EC on energy efficiency (Energy Efficiency Directive) as of 5 June 2014.
Also according to the Energy Efficiency Directive the Commission is empowered to review the harmonised efficiency reference values laid down in Commission Implementing Decision 2011/877/EU by means of delegated acts in order to permit adaptation to technical progress and changes in the distribution of energy sources.
This review must be carried out by 31 December 2014.
Significance of the energy efficiency reference values
Efficiency reference values establish the reference efficiency of separate production of heat and of separate production of electricity according to the methodology laid down in Annex I and II of the Energy Efficiency Directive.
The CHP Directive laid down a common definition of high-efficiency cogeneration.
To satisfy this definition, a defined level of primary energy saving should be achieved, which is to be calculated in comparison with the efficiency of separate electricity and heat production.
For this calculation the harmonised efficiency reference values must be used, which are the basis for the comparison.
Futhermore Member States are required to ensure that the origin of electricity produced from high efficiency cogeneration can be guaranteed according to objective, transparent and non-discriminatory criteria laid down by each Member State.
The guarantees of origin must be issued on the basis of the reference values which are to be used for the calculation of the quantity of electricity from high-efficiency cogeneration according to the calculation principles laid down in Annex I of the Energy Efficiency Directive. For determining the quantity of electricity from high-efficiency cogeneration for statistical purposes the reference values are also essential.
Methodology for establishing and reviewing the energy efficiency reference values
According to the Energy Efficiency Directive energy efficiency reference values must consist of a matrix of values differentiated by relevant factors, including year of construction and types of fuel, and must be based on a well-documented analysis taking, inter alia, into account data from operational use under realistic conditions, fuel mix and climate conditions as well as applied cogeneration technologies.
These values must establish the operating efficiency of the separate heat and electricity production that cogeneration is intended to substitute to be used in the formula of calculating primay energy savings.
When reviewing the reference values the following principles must apply according to the Energy Efficiency Directive (Annex II.(f)):
1. "For cogeneration units as defined in the Directive the comparison with separate electricity production shall be based on the principle that the same fuel categories are compared.
2. Each cogeneration unit shall be compared with the best available and economically justifiable technology for separate production of heat and electricity on the market in the year of construction of the cogeneration unit.
3. The efficiency reference values for cogeneration units older than 10 years of age shall be fixed [i.e. considered to be the same as] the reference values of units of 10 years of age.
4. The efficiency reference values for separate electricity production and heat production shall reflect the climatic differences between Member States."
The assessment for the purposes of the review of the reference values for heat and electricity therefore must take into account operating conditions of cogeneration units and best available technologies, the year of construction, the type of fuel, applied cogeneration technologies, and climate and other conditions having an impact on the efficiency of heat and electricity production.
The assessment must evaluate the current reference values and whether any and what adaptation are needed in light of technological progress, changes in fuel mix, applications and any other relevant operating, technical and economic conditions.
The assessment should establish what the current reference efficiencies are for the various fuels and technologies based on a representative sample of data.
It should provide an analysis of the current technological development trends and the main applications of cogeneration. It should provide recommendations on whether and how the current reference values must change based on well-established analysis, representative set of data and trends in energy technologies and energy markets.
It should assess the adequacy of the list of fuel types for which reference values currently exist in Commission Implementing Decision 2011/877/EU and make recommendations whether the list should be updated with additional or new fuel categories.
Likewise it should assess the adequacy of the list of cogeneration technologies provided in Annex I, Part II of the Energy Efficiency Directive and make recommendations whether the list should be updated, e.g. with additional or new technologies.
It should also assess whether and how the current correction factors for avoided grid losses and climatic conditions should be updated, and whether other correction factors would be needed to correctly reflect the efficiency of cogeneration, in particular whether the temperature level of the supplied heat is of relevance for the reference values.