Photovoltaic-green roof energy communities can uphold the European Green Deal: Probabilistic cost-benefit analyses help discern economically convenient scenarios


Cruz Torres F., Babí Almenar J., Rugani B.


Journal of Cleaner Production, vol. 414, art. no. 137428, 2023


The new roadmap of the European Union (EU), the European Green Deal, aims at tackling climate adaptation, energy, biodiversity, and pollution challenges. To contribute to such aim, the latest EU Renewable Energy Directive defines for the first time renewable energy communities. Among them, Photovoltaic-Green roof Energy Communities (PGECs) emerge as a potential option in urban areas. This paper investigates whether and under which conditions PGECs are capable to meet the objectives of the European Green Deal in an economically convenient manner. Since some conditions are context-specific, this research is showcased using a case study (Luxembourg). First, European legislation was reviewed to determine the suitable legal model for PGECs. Second, a systematic literature review helped identifying lifecycle costs and benefits of photovoltaic-green roofs and their value ranges. Third, a model for probabilistic social and private cost-benefit analyses was developed and tailored to Luxembourg. Lastly, Scenario Discovery was used to identify the ranges of input values leading to desirable net present values. Results show that PGECs can contribute to achieving multiple objectives of the European Green Deal in an economically convenient manner. From the societal perspective, PGECs are found to be economically convenient for any cost, benefit, and discount rate in the case study. From the private perspective, PGECs remain convenient in 62% of the scenarios, with green roofs’ installation cost and electricity generation benefit playing pivotal roles. This paper presents a rare combination of probabilistic cost-benefit analyses and scenario discovery, It supports policymakers designing incentive schemes for PGECs, and can be replicated in other countries.



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