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GSR 2015

91 04 RENEWABLES 2015 GLOBAL STATUS REPORT Figure 31. Share of Countries with Renewable Energy Policies, by Income Group, 2004–Early 2015 requirementstomandatethatallprojectssecureguaranteedgrid access prior to bidding, and China strengthened transparency mechanisms to avoid interference with tender results.40 Net metering or net billing policies were in force in 48 countries as of early 2015. Three countries—Colombia, Costa Rica, and Honduras—adopted new net metering policies in 2014.41 At the sub-national level, Dubai established a solar rooftop net metering programme, the second such programme in the region after Jordan’s.42 In recent years, countries such as Denmark—which limited its net metering credit carry-forward provision to one hour (instead of one month or one year as in other countries)—have revised net metering policies to respond to rapid market growth. A number of additional countries and territories revised existing net metering/billing policies in 2014. The US Virgin Islands instituted a temporary hold on solar PV development after reaching its 15 MW cap for capacity under its net metering and FIT regulations ahead of schedule.43 An increasing number of island states moved away from the practice of crediting excess electricity at retail rates and began crediting it at below the retail rate. The Seychelles’ net metering programme, for example, credits excess generation at 88% of the avoided fuel cost.44 Barbados and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines each introduced new policies under which small systems can consume their own power and can receive below-retail compensation for any power delivered to the grid. Larger systems in both countries are not allowed to consume power on-site, however, and must sell all of their power into the grid.45 Quotas or RPS establish mandatory shares of renewable power capacity or generation to be sourced by utilities. These policies traditionally have included a mandated target and a compliance mechanism, such as tradable renewable energy credits (RECs). As of early 2015, RPS or quota policies were in place in 26 countries at the national level—including China, Israel, and the United Kingdom—and in 72 states/provinces, including in Belgium (2), Canada (4), India (27 states and 7 union territories), and the United States (29 states, the District of Columbia, and two territories). In the United States, RPS policies have been the preferred regulatory method for renewable energy promotion at the state level. Mandates vary widely from state to state, with California’s requirement of 33% renewable power ranking among the country’s most ambitious mandates.46 State-level RPS policies continued to face opposition in 2014 and early 2015, and Ohio became the first US state to freeze its RPS, putting it on hold until 2017.47 In early 2015, West Virginia became the first state to remove its RPS policy entirely.48 Other states—such as Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas—continued to consider reducing or eliminating their RPS policies.49 As of early 2015, an estimated 126 countries around the world had adopted some form of financial support policy, including tax reductions, grants, and low-interest loans. A host of new support schemes and revisions to existing programmes was seen throughout 2014. Colombia’s new Renewable Energy Law included a slate of new tax incentives for the promotion of renewable energy, including import duty exemptions, value- added tax (VAT) exemptions, accelerated depreciation, and an income tax deduction.50 Malaysia eliminated its VAT on solar PV panels in its 2014 budget, and Pakistan removed import duties and the general sales tax on the import of solar PV panels.51 In the United States, the production tax credit (PTC), which covers several renewable technologies (and expired at the end Figure 31. Share of Countries with Renewable Policies by Income Group, 2004–Early 2015 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 in % High income Upper- middle income Lower- middle income Low income 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Early 2015 82% 80% 67% 62% Source: REN21 Policy Database Declines in income group shares in specific years are due primarily to countries moving into new income groups. Over the period 2004–2014, 80 countries made a total of 108 changes in income groups. 2004200520062007200820092010201120122013 Early 2015

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