Changing energy markets, risks and liability

What are the risks and liabilities in a changing energy market?

Martha Roggenkamp (Photo: EDGaR/Jan Buwalda)


The energy market is confronted with many changes as a result of market liberalization, climate change and supply security. The liberalization of the European Union energy market has resulted into important changes in the energy sector. One of the results is that vertical integrated companies, once unbundled, are required to operate independently from production and supply companies. In addition, primary fuels like oil, gas and coal are gradually being replaced by renewable sources like wind, solar and biomass. Natural gas is gradually being supplemented by alternatives like biogas.

The liberalization of the energy sector and the introduction of new energy sources involve new risks. Risks related to the energy sector include, for example, regulatory risks following the liberalization and unbundling process as network companies now need to act in a more commercial way than before, and supply risks as increasing use of renewables may result in balancing problems and ,eventually, in black-outs. If there are risks, there may be damages. The injection of new sources in the grid may have a negative impact on the grid and damages to the grid may cause public health problems. Supply interruptions may again result in damages for the energy consumers. Who is liable for these damages? Are the general rules on liability sufficient to address these risks?

We aim at investigating the risks which are related to the above described changes in the energy chain. A special focus will be on new risks being the result of regulatory developments like market liberalization and the introduction of new resources. After having investigated these risks and potential damages, we will analyze the extent to which the existing liability regimes are equipped to address and mitigate these damages. The outcome will involve policy and regulatory recommendations regarding the liability regime

Theme: Changing gas market 
Leader: Martha Roggenkamp (University of Groningen)
Partners: University of Groningen, Gasunie (performed by DNV GL) 
Budget: 0.5 milion euro
Duration: August 2011 / January 2015


Anna Butenko (DNV GL)
Maroeska Boots (DNV GL)
Martha Roggenkamp (University of Groningen)
Danielle Hanema (University of Groningen)
Daisy Tempelman (University of Groningen)

Book chapter

Roggenkamp, Martha M., D. Hanema. “New uses of the underground in the Netherlands: how to manage a crowded subsoil?” in The Law of Energy Underground, edited by Donald N. Zillman et al., pp. 373 – 397. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Harmonizing gas quality: obstacles and challenges in an internal market,” in European Energy Law Report Xedited by M. Roggenkamp and Henrik Bjoernebye, pp. 85–112. Brussels: Intersentia 2014. 


Hanema, Danielle, Martha Roggenkamp. “De regulering van aardwarmte in Nederland, Duitsland en Denemarken – een rechtsvergelijking.” Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Energierecht 2 (2014): 66– 77.

Roggenkamp, Martha M., H.D. Boekholt. “Schaliegas: hoeveel houvast biedt de Aanbeveling van de Europese Commissie voor effectieve gezondheids- en milieubescherming en de ontwikkeling van onconventioneel gas?” Milieu & Recht 66 (2014): 331–40.

Roggenkamp, Martha M., Daisy G. Tempelman. "Looking back, looking ahead—gas sector developments in the Netherlands and the EU: from manufactured gas via natural gas to biogas." Journal of Energy and Natural Ressources Law 30, 4 (2012): 523–37.

Tempelman, Daisy G., Anna Butenko. “What's in a smell? Risks and consequences of inadequate odorisation of biomethane.” Renewable Energy Law & Policy Review, 4, 2 (2013): 105–119.

Tempelman, Daisy G. "Groen (als) gas: een analyse van de groen-gasketen." Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Energierecht 3 2012: 119-130.


Butenko, Anna, Maroeska Boots, Johan Holstein. "Injecting green gas into the grid, Dutch example." Energy Challenge and Environmental Sustainability: Proceedings of the 12th International Association for Energy Economist European Conference, Venice, Italy, September 9-12, 2012 (Cleveland: International Association for Energy Economist, 2012).

Working paper

Van Bloemendaal, Karel, Anna Butenko, Maroeska Boots. “Technical and commercial natural gas value chain.” Groningen: DNV KEMA, working paper, 2013.

Boots, Maroeska. “The Dutch electricity value chain.” Groningen: DNV KEMA, working paper, 2011.

Conference paper

Boots, Maroeska. “Injecting biomethane into the grid, Dutch example: how to deal with capacity limits of the DSO grid?” International Energy Agency Bioenergy Conference, Vienna, November 2012.

Butenko, Anna, Maroeska Boots, Johan Holstein. “Injecting green gas into the grid, Dutch example.” Annual Conference of the International Association of Energy Economists, Venice, September 2012.

Butenko, Anna. “Green gas injection into the natural gas grid in the Netherlands.” Back to the Future of Gas: Energy Delta Convention, Groningen, November 2012.

Hanema, Danielle. ‘Subsoil (energy) projects and Dutch law.’ The European Environmental Law Forum, Groningen, September 2013. 

Roggenkamp, Martha. “Regulating changing energy markets and the role of law.” Enabling Sustainability with Gas: Closing Conference of the Energy Delta Gas Research, Amsterdam, March 2015.

Tempelman, Daisy. ‘Inadequate odorization of biomethane in the light of the Product Liability Directive?’ Groningen Energy and Sustainability Program Research day, Groningen, September 2013.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Groen-gasinvoeding.” Anniversary Conference of the Dutch Energy Law Association, Leiden, December 2012.

Tempelman, Daisy. “A legal introduction to biogas and biomethane from a European perspective.” Back to the Future of Gas: Energy Delta Convention, Groningen, November 2012.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Groen-gasinvoeding.” Energierecht op Locatie: Post-Academic Course of GCEL, Groningen, October 2012.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Groen-gasinvoeding.” Energy Valley Platform: Energie en Recht, Goutum, October 2012.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Legal framework regarding biogas / biomethane.” Dutch/German Winter School on Sustainable Energy Cooperation, Allersmaborg, April 2012.

Tempelman, Daisy. “Changing energy markets: risks and liabilities.” PhD seminar on natural gas and energy transitions, Energy Delta Convention, Groningen, November 2011.

Unpublished reports

Boots, M., P. Hesen. “Spanningskwaliteit in het elektriciteitsnet en decentrale opwek – final version of possible case study.” Groningen: DNV GL, unpublished report, November 2013.

Shapovalova, Dasha. “Odorisation of natural gas in an international context.” Groningen: DNV GL, unpublished report, June 2013. 

In the news

Injecting biogas.” Energy Delta Gas Research, 20 November 2012. (Featuring Butenko's and Tempelman's researches.)