French President Emmanuel Macron and the prime minister
of India put forth a common front on the need to fight climate
change, with the French leader saying he would travel to India
before year’s end for a summit on promoting solar energy.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi closed a European tour
meeting with Macron in Paris as world governments began
adjusting to U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the landmark climate accord reached in and named
for the French capital.
Modi delivered on France’s hope that India would confirm
its commitment to the Paris Agreement, saying that fighting on
behalf of “Mother Planet” is a gift for future generations. India,
the world’s fourth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, is a
critical player in the climate pact.
“We are in favor of this Paris Agreement and we will continue
to work in that direction, even beyond the Paris Agreement, even
if this agreement did not exist,” Modi said at the close of the
two leaders’ talks.
India, France form United Front on Climate Change
France and India have launched the Global Solar Alliance
aimed at developing solar energy and making it accessible
to all. Macron described it as a “concrete instrument” in
the fight against climate warming, and said other countries
would be brought in at
the India summit.
“We are both convinced our countries
have much to do for
ecological and environmental transition and for
the fight against climate
warming,” he said.
The newly elected
bolstered his diplomatic
credentials in meeting
EYE ON THE WORLD
BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Europe’s drive to decarbonize its energy “poses long-term
risks to the region’s regulated electricity and gas network operators,” according to a new report from credit and risk company
Moody’s Investors Service.
The study states that Europe’s continued transition to renewables, particularly wind and solar, is prompting new business
models, developing technology and evolving regulation that
could all “potentially undermine the credit quality over time” of
those network operators.
“The shift to renewables in Europe has thrown up different
challenges for the region’s energy network operators, with the
huge uptick in renewables-related investment into electricity
networks posing execution risks, while the move to decarbonization casts doubt over the long-term use of natural gas and the
networks that distribute it,” said Stefanie Voelz, vice-president
Senior Credit Officer at Moody’s.
Moody’s report also states that large-scale energy network
operators “may also be slow to adapt to the changing generation and consumption landscape, with electricity users becoming partially independent from the grid as they increasingly
operate their own renewable generation and/or storage units.
Furthermore, the growing electrification of transport or heating
Decarbonization Poses Risks to Europe’s Grid Operators says Moody’s
could significantly change network requirements.”
The report warns that these ongoing developments could lead to
sector fragmentation, potentially threatening existing network operators.
However, it adds that their role as system operators—whereby they
coordinate the efficient use of power generated by widely-distributed,
independent sources and ensure supply security on
a wider level—may become more important.
Voelz said that the regulatory response to the
renewables shift “will be key to the future evolution
of the energy network sector, as the change in scope
of activities in an environment of significant tech-
nological shift, may necessitate changes in the way
European networks are remunerated and customers’
tariffs are set, if credit quality is to be maintained.”
Moody’s says that affordability will remain a
key focus for network operators, as cost pressures
increase on consumers. It also finds that with investment requirements
remaining high, leading to growth in companies’ asset base beyond
2020, pressure on customer bills will rise.
“As renewable subsidies continue to weigh on bills, affordability
concerns could lead to deferral of cost and investment recovery for
networks, a credit negative,” said Voelz.
EYE ON THE WORLD
BY KELVIN ROSS, EDITOR, POWER ENGINEERING INTERNATIONAL