As part of their sustainability strategies, companies across the globe are entering into power purchase agreements (PPAs) with renewable energy generators. This paper aims to help address issues surrounding accounting for corporate renewable PPAs. In addition to fulfilling sustainability goals, companies are also entering into corporate PPAs for economic and branding reasons. PPAs are economically attractive because they often contain pre-agreed prices for a period of time, which limits exposure to power price variability, while direct sourcing from renewable producers ensures long-term energy cost affordability. Companies across the globe are assessing their impact on the environment. As part of their sustainability strategies, they are striving to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Because technology is evolving and renewable energy is becoming more cost competitive, the decarbonization of electricity is an achievable goal. One way to buy renewable power is by entering into corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs) directly with renewable energy generators. Corporate renewable PPAs are contracts that contain the commercial terms of the purchase of renewable energy, such as the contract period, point of delivery, delivery date/times, volume, price and product. Coussin: The operation of renewable energy facilities depends in principle on market conditions after the expiration of the aid. The sale of electricity produced on the stock market at market prices carries a risk of price fluctuations for traders.
Since operators often strive to market electricity at stable prices, it is mainly long-term electricity supply contracts – called Power Purchase Agreements – that have established themselves as an alternative. From a producer`s perspective, an AAE offers the opportunity to finance investments with long-term price and revenue security, while consumers guard against volatile electricity prices. Coussin: I`m convinced of that. In addition to the clear signal for the development of renewable energy from politics, the demand for green electricity in the industry is also increasing. This is also due to lower costs for power purchase agreements, particularly for companies with high electricity consumption. In addition, pricing and volume mechanisms provide long-term planning security. I think this issue also remains exciting with regard to the future treatment of the original guarantees. The challenges are posed by lack of experience and complexity management, especially in terms of accounting.
Coussin: To delineate, it is recommended to recommend a decision tree that examines the different areas of application. First, the contract must be reviewed for the existence of a lease under IFRS 16. The second step is to analyze the extent to which an AEA can be treated as a financial instrument in accordance with IFRS 9 for each party, resulting in a fair value assessment. This needs to be evaluated from both the buyer`s and seller`s point of view and could be particularly relevant to energy distributors and consumers.