|Energy in Europe|
These days, energy infrastructure investment is a subject never far from our minds. The Commission's proposed list of 248 Projects of Common Interest is a major step forward in pushing for more cross-border interconnections in Europe and greater security of supply in some of Europe's more vulnerable regions, particularly on the periphery. The decision also puts in place a timetable for reviewing and updating these projects. This is the final step in a more robust and democratic strategy for trans-European energy infrastructure.
Meanwhile, our work grows to make sure that Member States have implemented legislation they already agreed. There are elements of the Third Package, as well as energy efficiency rules, which would benefit many consumers in Europe. So the Commission is pushing to make sure that national administrations meet their obligations. You can see below where the slow movers are.
The Commission will continue focusing in 2014 on these and some other issues highlighted in the Commission Work Programme 2014, adopted on 22 October. Our main deliverables for next year include the proposal for a 2030 policy framework for energy and climate policies, a stocktaking of the completion of the internal energy market, and an action plan aimed at allowing consumers to benefit even more from the internal energy market.
Director-General for Energy
|Press room – Highlights of the month|
Adoption of List of Projects of Common Interest (PCI)
On 14 October 2013, the European Commission adopted a list of 248 key energy infrastructure projects. These projects were selected by twelve regional groups established by the new guidelines for trans-European energy infrastructure (TEN-E). Carrying the label "projects of common interest" (PCI) they will benefit from faster and more efficient permit granting procedures and improved regulatory treatment. They may also have access to financial support from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), under which a €5.85 billion budget has been allocated to trans-European energy infrastructure for the period 2014-20. For a project to be included in the list, it has to have significant benefits for at least two Member States; contribute to market integration and further competition; enhance security of supply, and reduce CO2-emissions. The list of PCIs will be updated every two years.
Energy Community Ministerial Council in Belgrade (Serbia) adopted the List of Projects of Energy Community interest (PECI)
On 24 October, the Energy Community Ministerial Council adopted the list of 35 “Projects of Energy Community Interest” (PECIs). Fourteen electricity generation, nine electricity infrastructure, ten gas infrastructure and two oil infrastructure projects were selected due to their importance for the development of cross-border energy markets in the region The projects will benefit from investment incentives and enhanced regulatory conditions. “I welcome the endorsement of the PECIs list by the Ministerial Council today. The PECI label will help to attract much needed investment into the region – almost 40 billion EUR is required until 2020. However, the lack of progress on achieving effective market opening and the regional integration of energy markets is worrying. The implementation of the Third Energy Package, as an imperative tool to reach these objectives, must become a key priority”, said Mr Günther Oettinger, European Commissioner for Energy.
|Featured posts from our Social Media / Audiovisual Corner|
International Trade Fair
for Property and Investment, Munich, Germany
"Yesterday at #exporeal I stressed the role of the EU building sector to increase #energy efficiency & deploy renewable energy in buildings"
14 October 2013
Watch the Press
|Event in the spotlight|
Energy solutions for Smart Cities and Communities
"70% of the EU's energy
consumption takes place in cities, 70% of GHG emissions come from cities,
the majority of the EU's citizens live in cities. The CONCERTO projects
in the 58 pilot communities include many good examples of renovations,
both of public buildings and of residential buildings. In autumn 2013 a
Strategic Implementation Plan, which will define the most important
activities for the integration of Energy, Transport and ICT related
technologies, will be published. The Strategic Implementation Plan will
cover the period from 2014 to 2020 (Horizon 2020). Cities will be able
to apply for EU instruments such as Horizon 2020, which can give
financial support to innovative parts, but also Structural Funds, which
support roll-out of existing sustainable energy solutions."
October infringements' package
Energy Efficiency in Buildings: the CZECH REPUBLIC and ROMANIA are requested to adopt national measures on energy efficiency in buildings
The Commission has formally requested the Czech Republic and Romania to ensure full compliance with their obligations under EU legislation on energy efficiency in buildings (Directive 2010/31/EU). The Commission sent a reasoned opinion to the two Member States asking them to notify the Commission of all their transposition measures for the directive, which had to be transposed into national law by 9 July 2012. If the Member States do not comply with their legal obligation within two months, the Commission may decide to refer them to the Court of Justice. Under this directive Member States must establish and apply minimum energy performance requirements for buildings; ensure that the building's energy performance is certified and carry out regular inspections of heating and air conditioning systems. In addition, the directive requires Member States to ensure that from 2021 onwards all new buildings will be so-called nearly zero-energy buildings. In September 2012 the Commission started infringement procedures against 24 Member States (all except Denmark, Ireland and Sweden) that had not notified the Commission of national measures transposing the directive into national law. Reasoned opinions were already sent to Italy, Greece, Portugal and Bulgaria in January 2013, to Spain and Slovenia in April 2013, to Belgium, Germany, Finland, France, Latvia, Poland and the Netherlands in June 2013 and to Austria, Cyprus, Estonia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary and the United Kingdom in September 2013.
More information here: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/efficiency/buildings/buildings_en.htm
|Question from a Member of the European Parliament|
Andreas Mölzer (NI)
Subject: Nuclear power plants - national subsidies and EIB loans
Nuclear power plants are not financially viable without state financing. For this reason, it seems, representation has been made to the Commission to allow national subsidies for the construction and operation of such plants; financing for these has in the past been available through the EIB. Rumour now has it that, under the EIB’s new financing instruments for energy projects, it will be possible to finance both the construction and the extension of the operating lifetime of nuclear plants with sizeable EIB loans.
1. Will the Commission really permit national subsidies to be used for the construction and operation of nuclear power plants?
2. Will it really be possible, under the EIB’s new financing instruments for energy projects, to finance both the construction and the extension of the operating lifetime of nuclear plants with sizeable EIB loans?
3. How much financing through the EIB has there been for nuclear power plants until now?
1. The Commission is aware of plans in some Member States in support of the construction and operation of nuclear power plants. At this stage however it has not been formally notified of any national financing scheme in support of the construction and operation of nuclear power plants and is not aware of any such aid having been given. Such schemes would have to be compatible with European Union (EU) state aid rules and internal market rules.
2. The construction and lifetime extension of nuclear plants could be eligible for EIB financing, provided that the projects are technically and environmentally sound; as well as financially and economically justified and viable, taking into account the associated lifetime costs. EIB financing would be possible only for projects which have received positive views of the Commission under Articles 41-43 of the Euratom Treaty. Please find more information on screening and assessment of nuclear projects in the recently revised EIB energy lending criteria: http://www.eib.org/attachments/strategies/eib_energy_lending_criteria_en.pdf .
3. With respect to data on the extent of financing from the EIB for nuclear power plants to date, the Honourable Member is kindly asked to address his questions directly to the EIB.
|Figure of the month|
The "projects of common interest" (PCI) will benefit from accelerated licensing procedures and improved regulatory conditions and may have access to financial support from the Connecting Europe Facility, under which a €5.85 billion budget has been allocated to trans-European energy infrastructure for the period 2014-20.
|Coming up next|
Scheduled for Commission adoption
Until 30 November 2013
16-17 December 2013
Call For Tenders
Until 8 November 2013
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