REC/CEC definitions

Overall assesment

Austria’s transposition legislation only covers RECs so far. To the extent that the criteria from the EU definitions are covered by the legislation (voluntary and open participation), they do not provide any more detail than that of the RED II. The definition does not address autonomy, nor does it mention effective control or its link to geographical proximity. As such the definition has not been properly transposed. Nevertheless, the definition does forbid companies that focus on energy communities from being eligible to participate as a member. Overall, the draft provisions on RECs focus mainly on specification of technical aspects rather than social organizational aspects. Lastly, no authority has been designated to oversee compliance with the REC criteria. This mixed with the fact that many legal forms are allowed, creates a higher risk of abuse.

Detailed assesment

Criteria of EU definition reflected in national definition

  • Voluntary and open are covered
  • In order to be eligible, private companies should not have participation in the energy community as part of their main commercial/professional activity
  • Autonomy is not covered
  • Effective control/geographic proximity is not covered (although geographical proximity is used as a technical descriptor for energy sharing)

Level of detail in the elaboration of principles contained in EU criteria

  • The REC must consist of two or more members/partners
  • In their membership contracts, information must be included on, inter alia, acceptance and withdrawal of participating network users
  • No further detail in the governance principles that have been covered
  • Unclear if RECs can act across the energy system, although they are allowed to provide aggregation and other energy services, implying the ability to be a supplier; RECs can be DSOs

Clearly defined purpose

More or less same as EU definition.

ICA cooperative governance principles reflected


Legal entities allowed

Associations, cooperatives, partnerships, corporations, community of home owners, or an organized association with legal personality.

Citizen participation is ensured


Designated authority to oversee


Number of definitions

1 – REC.

Coherency between both definitions