The promising new regulation for self-consumption in Spain

By Raquel Garde, CENER

A few months ago in a previous blog, we illustrated with the example of the Spanish pilot plant of the STORY project as regulation can influence the viability of a renewable plant with energy storage. In recent months, with the change of government, the national energy policy is experiencing important changes among which we must highlight the modification of the “Royal Decree of Self-consumption” that is applied in this project.

The draft of the decree, which is expected to be applied by the end of the year, aims to improve the implementation of photovoltaic self-consumption, and proposes a number of measures to do so: prioritize the user’s energy consumption needs, facilitate and expedite legal processes and reduce the investment eliminating some expensive requirements that have been applied until today.

The most important novelties are the elimination of the “sun tax”, which overtaxed self-consumption facilities greater than 10kW, the possibility of shared electric consumption in communities of households and the elimination of limits to the installed power that up to now, prevented the installation of systems with peak power higher than the contracted peak power making the use of energy storage economically unviable.

As a result of these changes, the energy management strategy implemented so far in the plant that allowed the Li-ion battery only to be charged with photovoltaic excesses and prevented injecting both photovoltaic and battery power into the network, has been replaced in recent weeks by an advanced strategy. This new strategy that allows charging the battery from the grid and injecting energy when necessary, will allow local resources to be managed in a more efficient way thanks to the prediction of generation and demand and taking into account electricity tariffs, in order to reduce the demand charge and the electrical consumption from the grid.

In some months, we will present the performance of the plant and we will see if our expectations are accomplished.