What will be the EU’s energy and climate change framework beyond 2020? That was the question asked on Wednesday, when North European Power Perspectives (NEPP) and THEMA, together with Elforsk, Energy Norway, Nordic Energy Research and Icelandic Energy and Utilities, invited 100 key stakeholders to a joint Nordic seminar in Oslo on the role of the Nordic power sector in the energy transition after 2020.

The seminar’s main focus was how developments at a European level could impact the Nordic electricity market in the longer term, before discussing the value of conducting in-depth analyses through Nordic research collaboration.

Chair of the seminar, Director Anne Cathrine Gjærde and Senior Adviser Benjamin Donald Smith, represented Nordic Energy Research, giving an overview of Nordic energy research cooperation, and a presentation of Nordic Energy Technology Perspectives (Nordic ETP) respectively.

The Nordic ETP highlights the significant potential for Nordic net export of clean electricity to Continental Europe, based on a large expansion of wind power, especially in Sweden and Denmark.

Thereafter the seminar was divided into three topics , roadmaps, capacity markets and support schemes. Participants discussed the complex interactions between connecting national electricity grids, and the use of capacity markets. As grids become more interconnected, the need for capacity markets to balance variable renewable production can be reduced.

Fridtjof Unander from the Norwegian Research Council served as moderator for the third session on support schemes, where the debate picked up on the role of research funding institutions in strategic prioritisation of research. Economist Mats Nilsson from mnCONTEXT argued against “picking the winners”, expressing that research needs freedom to be innovative.

The day was concluded by a panel debate on the need to strengthen the Nordic research cooperation within the energy sector. Here participants discussed the key challenges for increased Nordic research cooperation, where greater industrial involvement was cited as an important factor.

All presentations are available to download here.