Alexander Scheibe

Visiting Research Fellow

Dr Alexander Scheibe is Grid Strategist at Creos, the Electricity and Gas TSO of Luxembourg. His current research emphasises the role and significance of hydrogen for the EU’s energy policy, and it specifically focuses on how a future hydrogen regulatory framework could be designed given the present conflicting energy policy priorities of liberalization and sustainability. In 2018, Dr Scheibe was a Visiting Doctoral Fellow at OIES where he investigated the utilisation of scenarios as a decision-making tool in EU energy policy, focusing on the Ten-Year Network Development Plan. Alexander holds a PhD in European Energy Policy from the University of Luxembourg, and an MPP from the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy at Erfurt University.

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The future of the European hydrogen supply industry lies at the heart of the European Union’s energy policy, demanding the reconciliation of conflicting interests in liberalization, sustainability, and security of supply. This paper analyses the unique challenges faced by the emerging hydrogen economy, including the lack of an established market, transportation and storage infrastructure, uncertainty about demand and supply, and the manufactured nature of hydrogen production. The main question addressed is how the EU can create a regulatory framework that enables the expansion of the hydrogen economy within the time frame required to meet the net-zero target, while ensuring a well-functioning integrated market.

The paper argues that directly copying the liberalization model used in the gas and electricity sectors may not be suitable for hydrogen, and could lead to delays and uncertainties. Instead, it suggests combining existing provisions from natural gas and electricity regulations with novel elements tailored to the hydrogen supply industry. The first set of recommendations involves leveraging existing regulations to ensure non-discriminatory access to future hydrogen networks, fostering competition, and enhancing system resilience. Additionally, established instruments and institutions for European coordination should be extended to include hydrogen, promoting cross-border cooperation and integration between hydrogen and electricity. The paper also recommends new regulatory guidelines to address the unique characteristics of the hydrogen industry. It suggests aligning unbundling rules for hydrogen transport infrastructure with sustainability and security objectives, and exploring synergies with existing natural gas infrastructure while ensuring transparency and fair competition. Given the limited cost recovery potential of the nascent hydrogen market infrastructure, policymakers may need to depart temporarily from strictly cost-reflective tariff models, exploring alternative methods such as merged tariffs across different energy carriers, and public interventions such as grants, subsidies, or guarantees, to ensure sufficient infrastructure investments.

Overall, the proposed approach aims to create a robust regulatory framework that facilitates the creation of the European hydrogen market while addressing the diverse goals of the EU’s energy policy.

[post_title] => Regulating the future European hydrogen supply industry: A balancing act between liberalization, sustainability, and security of supply? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => regulating-the-future-european-hydrogen-supply-industry-a-balancing-act-between-liberalization-sustainability-and-security-of-supply [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2023-10-06 11:11:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2023-10-06 10:11:14 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.oxfordenergy.org/?post_type=publications&p=46606 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => publications [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 31306 [post_author] => 111 [post_date] => 2018-12-12 13:12:45 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-12-12 13:12:45 [post_content] => The transformation of the European Union’s energy sector poses a number of challenges to the European electricity system. Above all, both the anticipated increase of intermittent electricity from renewable sources and the completion of the internal energy market while guaranteeing a secure supply require an extensive development of electricity infrastructure at the European level. Nevertheless, Europe’s future electricity system entails numerous uncertainties. For example, the definite amount and the location of both electricity generation and consumption are unpredictable. In order to address these ambiguities, the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) develops the two-yearly Ten-Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP). By exploring different plausible future paths using scenarios, the TYNDP aims to identify key infrastructure projects – namely transmission lines and cross-border interconnectors – for the future electricity system. In this capacity, the TYNDP is the central planning tool for European grid infrastructure. This paper explores whether the TYNDP effectively provides a solid planning foundation for future grid investments. For this end, the TYNDPs 2012-2018 are investigated in the light of European energy policies, and their utilization by stakeholders is scrutinized. The paper argues that an existing policy congruence and the strong link to the Projects of Common Interest (PCI) confine the TYNDP solely to the hardware of the electricity system. This in turn profoundly limits the TYNDP’s effectiveness as a strategic planning tool. Hence, a closer connection to the software components of the anticipated European electricity system – namely the future market design and (European) regulations – would further allow for a holistic planning and evaluation of future electricity infrastructure projects. [post_title] => Utilization of Scenarios in European Electricity Policy: The Ten-Year Network Development Plan [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => utilization-scenarios-european-electricity-policy-ten-year-network-development-plan [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-12-13 09:39:05 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-12-13 09:39:05 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.oxfordenergy.org/?post_type=publications&p=31306 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => publications [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 2 [current_post] => -1 [before_loop] => 1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 46606 [post_author] => 974 [post_date] => 2023-10-06 10:59:24 [post_date_gmt] => 2023-10-06 09:59:24 [post_content] =>

The future of the European hydrogen supply industry lies at the heart of the European Union’s energy policy, demanding the reconciliation of conflicting interests in liberalization, sustainability, and security of supply. This paper analyses the unique challenges faced by the emerging hydrogen economy, including the lack of an established market, transportation and storage infrastructure, uncertainty about demand and supply, and the manufactured nature of hydrogen production. The main question addressed is how the EU can create a regulatory framework that enables the expansion of the hydrogen economy within the time frame required to meet the net-zero target, while ensuring a well-functioning integrated market.

The paper argues that directly copying the liberalization model used in the gas and electricity sectors may not be suitable for hydrogen, and could lead to delays and uncertainties. Instead, it suggests combining existing provisions from natural gas and electricity regulations with novel elements tailored to the hydrogen supply industry. The first set of recommendations involves leveraging existing regulations to ensure non-discriminatory access to future hydrogen networks, fostering competition, and enhancing system resilience. Additionally, established instruments and institutions for European coordination should be extended to include hydrogen, promoting cross-border cooperation and integration between hydrogen and electricity. The paper also recommends new regulatory guidelines to address the unique characteristics of the hydrogen industry. It suggests aligning unbundling rules for hydrogen transport infrastructure with sustainability and security objectives, and exploring synergies with existing natural gas infrastructure while ensuring transparency and fair competition. Given the limited cost recovery potential of the nascent hydrogen market infrastructure, policymakers may need to depart temporarily from strictly cost-reflective tariff models, exploring alternative methods such as merged tariffs across different energy carriers, and public interventions such as grants, subsidies, or guarantees, to ensure sufficient infrastructure investments.

Overall, the proposed approach aims to create a robust regulatory framework that facilitates the creation of the European hydrogen market while addressing the diverse goals of the EU’s energy policy.

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Latest Publications by Alexander Scheibe