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Publications

To promote transparency and provide information, the Federal Planning Bureau regularly publishes the methods and results of its works. The publications are organised in different series, such as Outlooks, Working Papers and Planning Papers. Some reports can be consulted here, along with the Short Term Update newsletters that were published until 2015. You can search our publications by theme, publication type, author and year.

Documents (76)

2019

2018

  • Insights in a clean energy future for Belgium - Impact assessment of the 2030 Climate & Energy Framework 17/05/2018

    In October 2017, the Federal Planning Bureau published its three-yearly energy outlook describing the Belgian energy and emission projections under unchanged policy up to horizon 2050. That outlook demonstrates that we are drifting away from agreed targets and international agreements made to protect future societies from hazardous levels of climate change. That is why that outlook is complemented by this report that adopts a different perspective. This publication describes and analyses three alternative policy scenarios that are compatible both with the 2030 EU Climate and Energy Framework and with the roadmap for moving to a competitive low-carbon economy in 2050.

    Working Paper 05-18  Publication(en), Slides - Danielle Devogelaer & Dominique Gusbin (BFP - FPB)(en), Slides - Jos Delbeke (European Commission)(en), Slides - Peter Claes (Febeliec)(en),

2017

  • Increasing interconnections: to build or not to build, that is (one of) the question(s) - Addendum to the cost-benefit analysis of adequate future power policy scenarios 28/09/2017

    At the request of the federal Minister of Energy, this report was carried out as a follow-up on the cost-benefit analysis published by the Federal Planning Bureau in February 2017. It constitutes an addendum to the February study in that some additional questions impacting the Belgian production park are scrutinized in detail. Four topics are dealt with. The first one concerns the impact of an increase in the Belgian cross-border transfer capacity by 2 GW on the functioning of the domestic flexible thermal park. The effect this will cause on the full load hours, the system marginal cost, CO2 emissions, the required volumes of natural gas and employment is studied. Second, the report assesses the cost of keeping currently existing gas-fired power plants operational and provides a comparison with the cost of building new flexible and reliable units. Third, the socio-economic impact of an increased risk of a black-out is scrutinized. The economic asymmetry this induces in relation to the costs and benefits of maintaining sufficient domestic capacity to comply with the legally defined Loss of Load (LOLE) criterion of 3h is documented. Finally, the question of premature closure of currently existing Belgian gas-fired power plants that have not yet reached the end of their operational lifetime is investigated by means of different indicators throughout the paper.

    CBA_201702  Publication(en),

  • Cost-benefit analysis of a selection of policy scenarios on an adequate future Belgian power system - Economic insights on different capacity portfolio and import scenarios 22/02/2017

    In this report, different capacity portfolio and import scenarios for Belgium are investigated. They are based on the reports published by the Belgian transmission system operator Elia in 2016. Four scenarios are scrutinized differing in their overall context (level of carbon price) and/or in the choice of the content of their structural block. A fifth scenario is added which constitutes a sensitivity analysis: in this scenario, a considerable amount of new natural gas-fired power plants on top of the structural block is built on the Belgian territory in order to study the impact of a fairly lower level of (net) imports and even explore the net export option. The five scenarios are compared in order to assess potential longterm strategic choices from a societal perspective.

    CBA_2017  Publication(en),

2016

  • Drivers of wholesale electricity prices in a small, open economy - Some evidence from the nuclear restart in Belgium 12/10/2016

    In this paper, the impact of a nuclear downtime and subsequent restart on wholesale electricity prices on the Belgian power exchange is investigated by means of a dual methodology. First, publicly available market data is used to construct a stable statistical model that is deployed to examine the effect of nuclear power generation variations on market price outcomes. Quantifying this phenomenon, also called the merit-order effect, with the aid of econometric methods translates into an esti-mated price decrease of around 10 €/MWh for a nuclear capacity hike of 2.5 GW. The importance and impact of the openness of the Belgian market, that is, its strong reliance on cross-border energy exchanges is highlighted. Next to this empirical evidence, the optimisation tool Crystal Super Grid is used to assess the impact of the resumed availability of the nuclear reactors on several indicators characterising the Belgian and European power landscape. A positive effect on overall welfare, consumer surplus and CO2 emissions can be noticed. As regards prices, this analysis confirms the negative merit-order effect which is calculated to equal, on average over a year, 3.8 €/MWh. Nevertheless, temporary hourly excesses of 30 €/MWh can occur. The paper then describes the possible causes of divergence between the two approaches.

    Our findings have important policy implications as they demonstrate the need to take the downward influence of prolonged nuclear power generation on wholesale prices into consideration when revising the (timetable in the) nuclear phase-out law since it may have a delaying effect on the compulsory energy transition towards a low-carbon economy.

    Working Paper 09-16  Publication(en), Publication(fr), Publicatie(nl),

2015

  • 2030 Climate and Energy Framework for Belgium - Impact assessment of a selection of policy scenarios up to 2050 29/04/2015

    On October 17, 2014, the Federal Planning Bureau published the fifth edition of its triennial long-term energy outlook. The report describes a Reference scenario up to 2050 and demonstrates the large discrepancy between this Reference scenario and what is necessary to be on track for the EU 2030 Climate/Energy Framework as well as for the low-carbon economy by 2050, hence the need for additional policies and measures. This observation led to the writing of this paper in which three policy driven scenarios that are compatible both with the 2030 and 2050 greenhouse gas emission reduction challenge outlined by the European Council are being scrutinised. The analysis encompasses environmental, energy system, economic and social impacts.

    Working Paper 03-15  Publication(en),

2014

  • De prijs van elektriciteit en aardgas voor ondernemingen in België - Samenstelling, niveau en evolutie ten opzichte van de buurlanden 18/12/2014

    In 2012 ever growing prices of electricity and natural gas compelled the federal government to take measures to better control these prices, and thus improve Belgian competitiveness. This study explores the evolution of the prices of electricity and natural gas for enterprises in Belgium and three neighbouring countries. It is done for 2007 - 2014 and using energy price data from Eurostat and some other sources. The average electricity prices in Belgium have long been the second highest of the four countries, but the price increases were less strong than in Germany and France. That’s why today the prices are moderate to low, suggesting that the measures must have been effective. During the whole period since 2007, the prices of natural gas were relatively low. Still, attention should be paid to the prices, in particular those of electricity. This is of uttermost importance for energy-intensive manufacturing. All for countries grant discounts on energy levies, in some cases even on network tariffs. The position energy-intensive manufacturing in Belgium may therefore be less favourable than would be suggested by the average prices. Hence, it remains important to analyse energy prices for energy-intensive manufacturing.

    Working Paper 10-14  Publicatie(nl),

  • Belgische black-outs berekend - Een kwantitatieve evaluatie van stroompannes in België 10/03/2014

    Privatization, internal market, interconnections, greenhouse gas emission reductions, renewable energy targets… is it possible to reconcile these themes? And if so, will our lights stay on? This is a major concern of a number of players in the energy field, especially the Secretary of State for Energy since he is responsible for guaranteeing the security of supply. In times of increased electricity production by variable energy sources and of distorted investment signals, guaranteeing security of supply is not evident, since the absence of investments in sufficient reserve capacity and – worst case scenario – inadequacy of generation capacity may lead to soaring societal costs. This Working Paper focuses on the specific event that, in spite of all initiatives and mechanisms in place, things go wrong: a national black-out paralyzing the entire Belgian economy for 1 hour and its price tag are analysed.

    Working Paper 03-14  Publicatie(nl),

2013

  • Walking the green mile in Employment - Employment projections for a green future 09/09/2013

    In this working paper, the employment effect triggered by a transition towards an all renewable energy system in Belgium by 2050 is scrutinized. The job impact is estimated up until the year 2030. Using a labour intensity methodology, net job gains are to be expected in each renewable trajectory for any given year. A distinction is made between construction, installation and manufacturing (CIM) and operations, maintenance and fuel processing (O&M) jobs, with the maximum amount of CIM jobs created over the reference scenario exceeding the amount of O&M jobs. This points to the fact that renewable energy sources tend to have a higher construction and installation component in employment than fossil fuels. These installation jobs, along with numerous other job types (e.g. monitoring, planning, certifying), are bound to be and remain domestic. A sensitivity analysis on the effect of applying a decreasing employment multiplier over time is modeled, accompanied by an enumeration of arguments pro and contra using this type of multiplier. All through the paper, a number of reflections are brought to the fore that may nuance the obtained figures and effects. In order for the jobs to materialize, targeted educations, preferably in close collaboration with industry, technical schooling and interest in science are crucial. Enabling policies and measures within a solid, transparent policy framework should accompany the whole process. In this regard, some policy domains and actions are described that could prove useful in tapping the vast job potential.

    Working Paper 07-13  Publication(en),

  • Analyse de l’adéquation de la production électrique en Belgique à l’horizon 2030 - Analyse basée sur les scénarios du projet d’EPE2 02/09/2013

    The analysis presented in this Working Paper is based on the scenarios of the draft Prospective Study for Electricity (PSE2) elaborated by the Directorate General for Energy of the FPS Economy, S.M.E.s, Self-employed and Energy in collaboration with the Federal Planning Bureau. The question examined in this analysis is whether the total generation capacity calculated in the PSE2 is compatible with the results of an adequacy assessment following ENTSO-E’s methodology (ENTSO-E is the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity).

    Working Paper 04-13  Publication(fr),

2012

  • Towards 100% renewable energy in Belgium by 2050 12/12/2012

    In 2011, the four Belgian ministers (1 federal, 3 regional) in charge of energy commissioned a consortium consisting of three scientific partners, being the Federal Planning Bureau (FPB), the Institut de Conseil et d'Etudes en Développement Durable (ICEDD) and the Vlaams Instituut voor Technologisch Onderzoek (VITO) to analyse the feasibility as well as the impact of a Belgian energy system transformation towards 100% renewable energy by 2050. This target is not focalized on the sole power sector, it applies to all primary energy consumed on the Belgian territory.

    The main question that is raised in this publication is whether Belgium is able to fully function on renewable energy sources by 2050. Although the objective is highly ambitious, this study shows that it is (technically) possible. The switch to an all renewable system would require a total investment of 300 to 400 billion euro during the period up to 2050. At the same time, however, the transition offers an answer to many challenges.
     

    ENERG_1201  Report(en),

2011

  • Impact of the EU Climate-Energy Package on the Belgian energy system and economy - Update 2010 Study commissioned by the Belgian federal authority 15/07/2011

    By the end of 2008, the Federal Planning Bureau published the Working Paper 21-08. This Working Paper described and analysed the impact of the EU Climate-Energy Package on the Belgian energy system and economy. Since then, however, a lot has changed: the macroeconomic projections altered radically further to the financial and economic crisis, recent developments in the field of oil and gas supply and demand made fossil fuel price projections to be revised upwards and a number of energy efficiency measures were agreed upon and put into law in the course of 2008 and 2009. All this made the 2008 study less relevant whilst only 2 years old. This study report then updates the analysis reported in the Working Paper 21-08 and dedicates special attention to the stepping up to -30% for the EU greenhouse gas reduction target. It is based on the new economic and policy context and benefits from recent analyses of the European Commission conducted at EU level.

    Working Paper 09-11  Publication(en),

2010

  • Electric cars: Back to the future? 21/05/2010

    The main objective of the paper is to evaluate the development of the EV in a couple of selected energy scenarios, to address the influence climate policy and the presence of nuclear energy can have on this development and to estimate the impact of different EV penetration rates on electricity demand. Throughout the paper, it becomes clear that, in the absence of specific, dedicated EV public programmes, policies and measures aimed at curbing climate change spark off the penetration of EVs, especially on a longer time horizon (up to 2030): with post 2012 climate policy in place, the pure EV penetration in 2020 attains approximately 2% of the road vehicle fleet while in 2030, around 5% of the road vehicle fleet will be electrically propelled. In the time span up to 2020, the electricity consumption of the EVs is rather small: it ranges between 0.4 and 0.5 TWh. It isn’t until 2025 and 2030 that EVs start to have a more visible impact on electricity consumption, stretching out between 1.2 and 1.4 TWh which represents approximately 1% of the total final electricity demand in 2030. Nuclear energy can then be a modest incentive for EVs through, assuming perfect market functioning, a decrease in electricity prices, hence triggering a slightly higher EV penetration.

    This paper assumes that no specific dedicated policies are in place to stimulate the upsurge of EVs. If policy makers decide they want to support and even intensify the expansion of EVs considering their positive impact on oil independency, climate change, transport efficiency and possibly job retention/creation, further policy measures (beyond climate policy) embedded in a long term national master plan are of utmost importance.

    Working Paper 13-10  Publication(en),

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