Commercial Readiness Index (CRI) assessment – using the method as a tool in renewable energy policy design (RE-CRI)

To be compatible with the 2-degree objective, up to 48 trillion dollars in investment will be needed over the period to 2035 (IEA, WEO), especially in low carbon technologies and networks. To enable these technologies to pass along the innovation chain it is essential to find appropriate measures and enabling policies for each of the renewable energy technologies.

Against this background, IEA RETD TCP supports further research in this field. With the RE-CRI project IEA RETD TCP aims to analyse the role of so-called ‘pull’ policies in OECD countries and beyond with the objective of classifying emerging renewable energy technologies along the innovation chain, making use of the novel approach of the Commercial Readiness Index (CRI) as a complement to the Technology Readiness Level which is currently the most widely used scale.

The research will result in concrete recommendations of most appropriate measures for each (selected) emerging renewable technologies to increase their chances of reaching the market. The recommendations of the study aim to contribute to a toolbox design and implementation for moving up emerging technologies.

The key questions to be addressed in the project are:

  • Method: in what way can the CRI method serve as a tool for policy makers to assess technologies’ barriers and maturity, in order to choose the right policies that will be effecting at taking the technology towards commercialisation? How applicable is the method? How can sub-indexes be established? What are pros and cons?
  • Policies: what type of policies – based on the specific case studies – are effective in achieving the objective of pulling renewable energy technologies towards commercialisation? What is the effect of different policies, and why? At what CRI levels are which policies appropriate? Which individual barriers for each CRI sub-index can be mitigated by what type of policies?

The Carbon Trust will conduct the project. The kick-off meeting was held on 27 October 2016. The project will be published by mid-April 2017.

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