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Energy Economic Development in Europe

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "C: Energy Economics and Policy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 January 2023) | Viewed by 22142

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Guest Editor
CeBER and Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra, 3004-512 Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: energy transition; energy consumption and economic growth nexus; environmental economics; energy economics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra, and Centre for Business and Economics Research (CeBER), Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: financial economics; environmental economics; energy economics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Over the last decade, Europe experienced rapid growth in the installed capacity of new renewable energies, driven by policies aiming to reduce fossil fuel imports, carbon dioxide emissions, and technological changes that led to sizable generation cost reductions for wind and solar power. The region is currently at a crossroads, as it needs to foster this growth to assure its energy independence and comply with the Paris Agreement without compromising its energy security. This Special Issue focuses on the main challenges Europe faces during this transition process, and the actions and policies it may adopt to overcome them. We seek both empirical and analytical papers on the following issues:

- The intermittency problem underlying the new renewable energy sources (solar and wind) and the role played by water pumping and other storage systems in its mitigation. Studies concerning green hydrogen and the technological evolution which may lead it to leap from the current incipient stage to its widespread adoption are encouraged.

- Energy policies and their coordination, aiming to promote renewable energy sources and ensure Europe’s energy security in the face of growing geopolitical tensions among fossil-fuel-exporting countries.

- The role played by the European carbon market in the promotion of renewable energies.

- The integration of energy grids and energy markets.

- Technological progress as a driver of change in the renewable energy mix and cost reductions.

- Renewable energy investments, focusing on the bureaucratic and political barriers to its development, incentives (feed-in tariffs, tax credits, financial incentives, among others), risk and financial return on the projects, and delays in their implementation.

Dr. José Alberto Fuinhas
Dr. Matheus Koengkan
Dr. Nuno Miguel Barateiro Gonçalves Silva
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Europe
  • Renewable Energy 
  • Energy Transition
  • Energy Security
  • Carbon Market
  • Green Hydrogen
  • Energy Policies

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

19 pages, 321 KiB  
Article
Assessment of Selected Determinants Affecting the Acceptance of the Development of Electromobility by the Private and Business Sectors—A Case Study in Portugal
by Henrique Ferreira, Susana Silva, Tiago Andrade, Erika Laranjeira and Isabel Soares
Energies 2023, 16(6), 2674; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16062674 - 13 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1209
Abstract
The energy transition requires widespread electrification of the transport sector. To promote the penetration of electric vehicles (EVs), it is essential to understand consumers’ perceptions and behavior, particularly regarding the main determinants of EV purchase and the acceptance of electric mobility (EM). With [...] Read more.
The energy transition requires widespread electrification of the transport sector. To promote the penetration of electric vehicles (EVs), it is essential to understand consumers’ perceptions and behavior, particularly regarding the main determinants of EV purchase and the acceptance of electric mobility (EM). With this aim, we focused on an industrialized city in Portugal, addressing the differences between the effective ownership of an EV and the acceptability of EM and between the domestic sector (DS) and the business sector (BS) through questionnaires. Our results indicate that sociodemographic variables are the main determinants of the purchase of EVs and the acceptance of EM in the DS. Men and higher income individuals are more likely to own an EV. On the other hand, younger generations are more likely to have high EM acceptance. Individuals who already own an EV are the ones that have the desire and economic means to do so, regardless of any incentives. Still, widespread market penetration of EVs requires incentives for individuals who desire to own one of these vehicles but do not have the economic power to do so. Additionally, the DS and the BS behave differently; hence, specially designed policies are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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16 pages, 351 KiB  
Article
Greenfield Investment as a Catalyst of Green Economic Growth
by Aleksy Kwilinski, Oleksii Lyulyov and Tetyana Pimonenko
Energies 2023, 16(5), 2372; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16052372 - 1 Mar 2023
Cited by 58 | Viewed by 2635
Abstract
The intensification of countries’ growth causes the depletion of natural resources, biodiversity degradation, ecological imbalances, damage, and disasters. The aggravation of ecological issues requires the development of mechanisms for simultaneous achievement of economic, social, and ecological goals. The energy sector is the core [...] Read more.
The intensification of countries’ growth causes the depletion of natural resources, biodiversity degradation, ecological imbalances, damage, and disasters. The aggravation of ecological issues requires the development of mechanisms for simultaneous achievement of economic, social, and ecological goals. The energy sector is the core direction of economic decarbonization. Therefore, green economic growth requires economic development due to the extension of innovative technologies for renewable energies and relevant investment for that. The study aims to test the hypothesis on the impact of green field investment on green economic growth. The object of the research was countries in the European Union (EU) for 2006–2020. This study applied the Malmquist-Luenberger Global Productivity Index to estimate green economic growth. It considers the resources available for the production process in the country (labor, capital, energy), the desired outcome (gross domestic product) and undesirable results (emissions to the environment) of this process. The study applied the Tobit model to test the hypothesis. The findings confirm the spatial heterogeneity of green economic growth among the EU countries. The asymmetry in technological efficiency and progress limits the efficacy of green innovations. At the same time, the obtained data confirm the research hypothesis. It is shown that along with green investments, economic openness and the efficiency of public governance have a positive effect on the green economic growth of countries. The findings highlight the importance of attracting green investments to increase green innovations in renewable energy, which boost green economic growth. This study explored the linear and direct effects of green investment on the green economic growth while eliminating the transmission impact of other mediating factors. It should be noted that further research should analyze the nonlinear impact of green investment on the green economic growth and the mediating effect, which could be caused by other variables (corruption, governance efficiency, green innovations, etc.). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
20 pages, 3147 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Role of Financial Incentives in Promoting Eco-Friendly Houses in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area—Portugal
by Matheus Koengkan, José Alberto Fuinhas, Magdalena Radulescu, Emad Kazemzadeh, Nooshin Karimi Alavijeh, Renato Santiago and Mônica Teixeira
Energies 2023, 16(4), 1839; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16041839 - 13 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2297
Abstract
This article investigates the impact of fiscal and financial incentives for energy efficiency labels on eco-friendly houses (houses with high energy efficiency certificates, such as A+, A, B, and B−) in 18 municipalities in the Lisbon metropolitan region during the period 2014–2020. The [...] Read more.
This article investigates the impact of fiscal and financial incentives for energy efficiency labels on eco-friendly houses (houses with high energy efficiency certificates, such as A+, A, B, and B−) in 18 municipalities in the Lisbon metropolitan region during the period 2014–2020. The empirical results indicate that the variables of fiscal incentive policies for energy efficiency labels, income per capita, credit agreements for the purchase or construction of a house, and the number of completed dwellings in new constructions for family housing encourage eco-friendly houses. In contrast, the variable number of completed reconstructions per 100 completed new constructions has a negative impact. Although this study is constrained by data limitations resulting from the short period under analysis and the moderate number of municipalities available, it advances the discussions around energy efficiency in residential properties in Portugal. Furthermore, it investigates the effectiveness of tax incentive policies for energy efficiency seals as an instrument for promoting ecological houses in the municipalities of the Lisbon metropolitan area. Thus, the need to study the Portuguese capital stands out as it is the most populous city in the country and concentrates a large part of the economic activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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21 pages, 4710 KiB  
Article
A Brief History of District Heating and Combined Heat and Power in Denmark: Promoting Energy Efficiency, Fuel Diversification, and Energy Flexibility
by Katinka Johansen
Energies 2022, 15(24), 9281; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15249281 - 7 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2624
Abstract
The World Energy Council ranks the Danish energy system among best in the world judging by the energy trilemma criteria: energy security, energy equity, and sustainability. District heating (DH) and CHPs are pivotal for this ranking. This brief historical account illustrates how a [...] Read more.
The World Energy Council ranks the Danish energy system among best in the world judging by the energy trilemma criteria: energy security, energy equity, and sustainability. District heating (DH) and CHPs are pivotal for this ranking. This brief historical account illustrates how a mix of historical events, collective societal experiences, cultural and political values inform the Danish history of DH and CHPs. After the global energy crisis in the 1970s, public and political sentiment called for energy independence, alternatives to imported fuels, and alternatives to nuclear power. National-scale collective heat infrastructure planning initiatives targeted the energy policy objectives: energy independence, fuel diversification, and energy efficiency, and a political culture of broad coalition agreements made the necessary long-term planning possible. In the following decades, growing environmental awareness and concern called for renewable energy resources as alternatives to fossil fuels. Research considered the role of collective memories and temporal distance (i.e., time) for this sociotechnical journey; it notes the innovative thinking, re-use/re-cycling and energy efficiency focus that still characterize the Danish DH communities today, and it suggests that the intangible, yet reliable nature of heat could lead to the rebound effect in end-user heat-consumption behaviours. The methodological question of how, and to what extent, historical insights and lessons learnt may be translated across contexts is raised and discussed. Although sociotechnical trajectories may have granted the Danish energy system a head-start in the global race towards low-carbon energy transitions, perhaps the route was less direct than popularly portrayed. The Danish DH sector currently faces challenges of growing biomass import dependency, but also the potentials of sector coupling and energy flexibility. Energy efficiency and energy flexibility potential may be harvested via DH and district cooling solutions in future ‘smart’ energy systems globally. Hopefully, insights and lessons learnt from this brief history of Danish DH and CHPs prove informative elsewhere. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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19 pages, 1739 KiB  
Article
The Balance and Optimization Model of Coal Supply in the Flow Representation of Domestic Production and Imports: The Ukrainian Case Study
by Tetiana Bilan, Mykola Kaplin, Vitaliy Makarov, Mykola Perov, Ihor Novitskii, Artur Zaporozhets, Valerii Havrysh and Vitalii Nitsenko
Energies 2022, 15(21), 8103; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15218103 - 31 Oct 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1371
Abstract
The successful supply of an economy with coal fuel, for a country that carries out its large-scale extraction and import, is a complex production and logistics problem. Violations of the usual supply scheme in conditions of crises in the energy markets, international conflicts, [...] Read more.
The successful supply of an economy with coal fuel, for a country that carries out its large-scale extraction and import, is a complex production and logistics problem. Violations of the usual supply scheme in conditions of crises in the energy markets, international conflicts, etc., lead to the problem of simultaneous restructuring of the entire supply scheme. This requires changes in the directions and capacities of domestic production and imports. In this article, the above problem is solved by the economic and mathematical model of production type. The developed model includes subsystems of domestic production and import supply. The results of modeling economy supply with thermal coal for different values of demand are given. The model was used to determine the amounts of coal production for Ukraine with the structure of the coal industry of 2021 and under the condition of anthracite consumers’ transformation to the high volatile coal. Simulations have shown that eliminating the use of anthracite requires the modernization of existing coal mines. Under those conditions, the import of high volatile coal will amount to 3.751 million tons in 2030 and 11.8 million tons in 2035. The amounts of coking coal imports will be 5.46 million tons, 5.151 million tons, and 7.377 million tons in 2025, 2030, and 2035, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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17 pages, 2841 KiB  
Article
Modelling the Nexus between Financial Development, FDI, and CO2 Emission: Does Institutional Quality Matter?
by Festus Fatai Adedoyin, Festus Victor Bekun, Kayode Kolawole Eluwole and Samuel Adams
Energies 2022, 15(20), 7464; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15207464 - 11 Oct 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1536
Abstract
The present study draws motivation from the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, with a special focus on SDGs 7 and 13, which highlight the need for access to clean and affordable energy in an environment devoid of emissions; it addresses climate change mitigation [...] Read more.
The present study draws motivation from the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, with a special focus on SDGs 7 and 13, which highlight the need for access to clean and affordable energy in an environment devoid of emissions; it addresses climate change mitigation in the context of Sub-Saharan Africa. To this end, a carbon-income function setting for Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is constructed. The dynamic relationship between financial development and climate change is evaluated using three indicators and foreign direct investment and carbon dioxide emissions (CO2), while accounting for regulatory institutional quality using a “generalized method of a moment” estimation technique that addresses both heterogeneous cross-sectional issues. Empirical results obtained showed a positive statistical relationship between economic growth and CO2 emissions in SSA at the <0.01 significance level. This suggests that, in SSA, the economic growth path is pollutant emissions driven. This indicates that SSA is still at the scale phase of her growth trajectory. However, an important finding from the present study is that regulatory institutional indicators, such as political stability, government effectiveness, control of corruption, and voice and accountability, all exert a negative effect on CO2 emissions. This implies that regulatory measures militate against emissions in SSA. Based on the empirical findings of this study, it can be concluded that clean FDI inflows assist in ameliorating emissions. Thus, the need for a paradigm shift to cleaner technologies, such as renewables, that are more eco-friendly, is encouraged in Sub-Saharan Africa, as the current study demonstrates the mitigating role of renewable energy consumption on CO2 emissions. Further policy prescriptions are presented in the concluding section. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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18 pages, 1563 KiB  
Article
Fossil Fuel and Biofuel Boilers in Ukraine: Trends of Changes in Levelized Cost of Heat
by Valentyna Stanytsina, Volodymyr Artemchuk, Olga Bogoslavska, Artur Zaporozhets, Antonina Kalinichenko, Jan Stebila, Valerii Havrysh and Dariusz Suszanowicz
Energies 2022, 15(19), 7215; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15197215 - 30 Sep 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1769
Abstract
An increase in the share of renewables in heat supply systems is a promising direction to reach sustainable development goals and decarbonization. Decision makers should consider various factors, including energy market prices, the availability of biofuels, boiler and auxiliary equipment costs, logistic costs, [...] Read more.
An increase in the share of renewables in heat supply systems is a promising direction to reach sustainable development goals and decarbonization. Decision makers should consider various factors, including energy market prices, the availability of biofuels, boiler and auxiliary equipment costs, logistic costs, and the taxation system. In the European Union, the energy crisis causes a rapid increase in fossil fuel prices. Moreover, the use of fossil fuels results in greenhouse gas emissions, which threatens the achievement of sustainable development goals. We studied the influence of the delivery cost and the value of environmental tax rates on the levelized cost of heat. Low-capacity boilers (up to 1 MW) and different fossil and renewable fuels were analyzed. An analysis was carried out on the example of Ukraine. The European trends were factored in. The obtained results showed that biofuel boilers had lower levelized costs of heat than fossil fuel boilers. Delivery costs and environmental taxes have a significant impact on heat energy costs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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18 pages, 743 KiB  
Article
RES Market Development and Public Awareness of the Economic and Environmental Dimension of the Energy Transformation in Poland and Lithuania
by Ewa Chomać-Pierzecka, Anna Sobczak and Edward Urbańczyk
Energies 2022, 15(15), 5461; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15155461 - 28 Jul 2022
Cited by 31 | Viewed by 2225
Abstract
Energy transformation in the European Union countries is progressing. Its scope is defined by formal and legal regulations and its effectiveness by the position of decision-makers, legitimised by public support for a particular type of challenge. Both issues are the focus of this [...] Read more.
Energy transformation in the European Union countries is progressing. Its scope is defined by formal and legal regulations and its effectiveness by the position of decision-makers, legitimised by public support for a particular type of challenge. Both issues are the focus of this article. The promotion of environmental protection measures is currently strongly promoted globally. Hence the widespread acceptance in principle of the changes associated with the implementing of the Green New Deal in the energy sector is not surprising. However, to what extent is knowledge of the solutions constituting the mainstream transition (renewable energy sources) ingrained among communities? Does the level of public awareness influence individual consumer choices, modelling the market? The threads outlined above inspired deliberations focused on analysing the assumptions behind energy transition in the EU, with particular reference to the countries directly bordering the line of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine (Poland, Lithuania), in the light of the resulting and escalating restrictions exacerbating the energy crisis. The immediate neighbourhood of the adopted countries, and their similar socio-economic conditions, provided the basis for comparisons and conclusions. The motivation for the choice of the issue and research area was to fill the clear information gap in this study area, strictly in relation to the adopted configuration of these countries. The research proceedings in the outlined area were primarily based on the methodology appropriate for capture and analysis of economic phenomena, enriched with the results of our own findings (questionnaire survey regarding general knowledge of the ZE market and consumer preferences), in order to assess the economic and environmental dimensions of energy transition in Poland and Lithuania and to assess the level of public awareness in this respect in the countries under study. The presented research is an important complementary element of the authors’ series of studies devoted to the analysis of the development of the renewable energy market in Poland and the Baltic States, related to the individual dimensions of RES. Their results give rise to the conclusion that increased social awareness in these countries determines the popularisation of RES solutions in individual use, regardless of their type, stimulating the progress of the energy transformation process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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16 pages, 596 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Natural Gas, Oil, and Renewables Consumption on Carbon Dioxide Emissions: European Evidence
by Matheus Belucio, Renato Santiago, José Alberto Fuinhas, Luiz Braun and José Antunes
Energies 2022, 15(14), 5263; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15145263 - 20 Jul 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1707
Abstract
Natural gas has returned to prominence in the agenda of European countries since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia in 2022. However, natural gas is a fossil source with severe environmental implications. This paper aims to verify the impact of [...] Read more.
Natural gas has returned to prominence in the agenda of European countries since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia in 2022. However, natural gas is a fossil source with severe environmental implications. This paper aims to verify the impact of natural gas on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions for a European panel from 1993 to 2018 for sixteen countries. An Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL) model in the form of an unrestricted error correction model was used to identify the short-run impacts, the long-run elasticities, and the speed of adjustment of the model. The results indicate that in the short-run, natural gas has a negligible impact on CO2 emissions when faced with oil consumption (6.7 times less), whereas the consumption of renewables and hydroelectric energy proved to be able to decrease the CO2 emissions both in the short- and long-run. The elasticity of oil consumption is lower than the unit, indicating that efficiency gains have been achieved during the process of the energy transition to clean energy sources. If economies use non-renewable energy, governments must continue to prefer natural gas to oil. Renewables and hydroelectric consumption must be used to revert the path of CO2 emissions. Given the unstable scenario that has been caused by the War in Eastern Europe, politicians should focus on accelerating the transition from fossil to renewable energies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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24 pages, 6264 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Energy Policies on the Energy Efficiency Performance of Residential Properties in Portugal
by José Alberto Fuinhas, Matheus Koengkan, Nuno Silva, Emad Kazemzadeh, Anna Auza, Renato Santiago, Mônica Teixeira and Fariba Osmani
Energies 2022, 15(3), 802; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15030802 - 22 Jan 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3166
Abstract
The effect of energy policies on the energy performance of residential properties/houses in nineteen Portuguese districts from 2014 to 2021 was investigated. A linear random-effects model regression was used as the method in this empirical investigation. The empirical results indicated that the income [...] Read more.
The effect of energy policies on the energy performance of residential properties/houses in nineteen Portuguese districts from 2014 to 2021 was investigated. A linear random-effects model regression was used as the method in this empirical investigation. The empirical results indicated that the income per capita has a negative effect on residential properties with high energy efficiency certificates (e.g., A+, A, and B) and a positive impact on residential properties with low energy efficiency certificates (e.g., C, D, E, and F); the codes and standards energy policies for energy efficiency have a positive effect on residential properties with high energy efficiency certificates (e.g., A, B, and B−) and residential properties with low energy efficiency certificates (e.g., C, D, E, and F); the fiscal and financial incentive policies for energy efficiency have a positive effect on residential properties with high energy efficiency certificates (e.g., A+, A, and B) and a negative effect on residential properties with B− energy certificate, and also a negative effect on residential properties with low energy efficiency certificates (e.g., C and D) and a positive effect on residential properties with an F energy certificate; the information and education policies of energy efficiency have a positive effect on residential properties with high energy efficiency certificates (e.g., A+, A, and B) and residential properties with low energy efficiency certificates (e.g., C, D, and E); and, finally, the consumer credit per capita has a positive effect on residential properties with high energy efficiency certificates (e.g., A+, A, and B) and a negative effect on residential properties with low energy efficiency certificates (e.g., C, D, and F), as well as a positive effect on residential properties with an F energy certificate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Economic Development in Europe)
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