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Report / Electricity

Enlarging incentive regulation to improve public awareness and trust in electricity transmission infrastructure development

Author(s): BHAGWAT Pradyumna, KEYAERTS Nico, MEEUS Leonardo

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ABSTRACT

The need for substantial investment in the European electricity transmission grid to meet the ambitions of market integration and decarbonisation is well known. However, the development of these projects has a significant impact on the public at large. As the public becomes increasingly active in expressing its concerns and opposition, stakeholder engagement activities to raise awareness and build trust in infrastructure development are becoming more and more important, as well as challenging. Suboptimal stakeholder engagement by project developers leads to distortion in the network planning and development process. Therefore, it is crucial that project promoters are encouraged to implement innovative and effective stakeholder engagement strategies, and to reflect the outcomes of those activities in the design of the projects. This report re-examines and assesses the possibility of enlarging incentive regulation to improve the performance of project promoters in building public awareness and trust in infrastructure development projects. The study is structured into three blocks:

1) Taking stock of the obstacles to stakeholder engagement activities and current activities organised by project developers

2) Innovation in the context of the economic regulation of project developers (TSOs)

3) Enlarging incentive regulation to, first, include other regulators and, second, to consider economic incentives for other stakeholders involved in project development