Do green electricity consumers contribute to the increase in electricity generation capacity from renewable energy sources? Evidence from France
In 2019, 3.9 million French residential customers subscribed to 100% green electricity offers. These offers are based on guarantees of origin (GOs), the electricity-tracking system in the European Union. Based on an analysis of the French GO registry, this paper assesses whether French green electricity consumers contribute to the increase of renewable electricity generation capacity. Theoretically, green consumers may have a direct or indirect impact on additional investments. Our results show that, in practice, the GO system benefits almost exclusively to large old French hydro plants. To make the GO system more effective in raising renewable energy capacity, two options are discussed: limiting the issuing of GOs to new production devices only or informing consumers via additionality criteria labelling.