2 minutes to understand what renewable energy attributes certificates are

TEO-the energy origin allows you to quickly understand the basic principles of renewable energy attributes certificates, or also called power guarantees of origin (GoOs) in Europe, as well as the traceability methodology on which this mechanism is built. 

Notion you will learn: Renewable energy attribute certificates, Power Guarantees of Origin, Book and Claim, 24/7 approach

What are renewable power attributes certificates? What is the traceability model used?

A renewable energy attribute certificate is a digital certificate that guarantees 1 MWh of renewable power has been injected into the grid.

This mechanism is based on the traceability principle of “book and claim”: Producers who prove to produce and inject renewable electricity into the grid, can register the quantity of this sustainable power on a dedicated registry and receive certificates in return. These certificates can then be exchanged and traded. Energy suppliers or specific actors of the market can purchase those certificates and “cancel” them for the account of a final consumer (a company, an individual). Only the final consumer will be able to claim the sustainability attributes of the certificates they have purchased. In doing so, the consumers pay a voluntary premium to producers who operate responsibly and sustainably.

Because you cannot physically trace the electrons once injected into the grid, the only solution possible is to differentiate physical flow of energy and its sustainability attributes.  Therefore, GoOs may not a proof that you are consuming power from renewable sources but rather a proof that you are actively participating in their development. This is why GoOs have been recognized to be a powerful tool to incentivize the generation of more renewable assets and for consumers to actively participate to energy transition.

Today, this mechanism is used globally: GoOs in EU, RECs (renewable energy certificate) in the USA, Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGOs) in the UK, etc.

Limits of the model

Because certificates can be used for 12 months after production, the model has been questioned in terms of green washing. 24/7 approach has emerged in order to match consumption and production on an hourly basis. That way, decarbonized power is consumed at the same time it is produced, avoiding any greenwashing.

TEO, the next generation of Guarantee of Origin

In line with this granular approach, TEO-the energy origin enhances GoOs mechanism. The TEO platform allows to authenticate the production and match it with the consumption, with a high granularity. Built on blockchain technology, the TEO platform is a secure tool making green energy consumption concrete, giving access to production info and matching. Thanks to blockchain technology, there cannot be any double counting of these sustainable attributes

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