Market policies

The United States has extended wind's federal Production Tax Credit to end 2003 and there are real hopes for a federal law requiring electricity retailers to comply with a 10% minimum standard for the proportion of renewables in their portfolios by 2020. Britain is introducing a far tougher standard in its Renewables Obligation, launching this month: 10% by 2010, from only a slightly higher base than the US. Other countries going for Renewables Portfolio Standards are Belgium, Sweden and Italy, while Australia already has one. Canada is introducing a production incentive payment for wind, though it is relatively low. Portugal has a new and higher fixed premium wind tariff, similar to Germany's and without the restrictions of the French tariff. Denmark has dropped its tariff to a level that will not encourage much new build, arguing that it has already exceeded its target of 20% renewables supply by 2003.

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