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Reference Regulatory Framework

Reference Regulatory Frameworks

In November 2016, the European Commission adopted a legislative proposal for a recast of the Renewable Energy Directive. In the context of the co-decision procedure, a final compromise text among the EU institutions was agreed in June 2018. In December 2018, the revised renewable energy directive 2018/2001/EU entered into force, as part of the Clean energy for all Europeans package, aimed at keeping the EU a global leader in renewables and, more broadly, helping the EU to meet its emissions reduction commitments under the Paris Agreement. 

In RED II, the overall EU target for Renewable Energy Sources consumption by 2030 has been raised to 32%. The Commission’s original proposal did not include a transport sub-target, which has been introduced by co-legislators in the final agreement: Member States must require fuel suppliers to supply a minimum of 14% of the energy consumed in road and rail transport by 2030 as renewable energy.

The RED II defines a series of sustainability and GHG emission criteria that bioliquids used in transport must comply with to be counted towards the overall 14% target and to be eligible for financial support by public authorities. Some of these criteria are the same as in the original RED, while others are new or reformulated. In particular, the RED II introduces sustainability for forestry feedstocks as well as GHG criteria for solid and gaseous biomass fuels.

Within the 14% transport sub-target, there is a dedicated target for advanced biofuels produced from feedstocks listed in Part A of Annex IX. These fuels must be supplied at a minimum of 0.2% of transport energy in 2022, 1% in 2025 and increasing to at least 3.5% by 2030.

More details about RED II.

Renewable Energy Directive

The Renewable Energy Directive (2009/28/EC of 23 April 2009), so called RED Directive, poses two key requirements for the uptake of renewable energy and – more specifically – biofuels in the transport sector.

  1. EU Member States are required to meet 10% renewable energy share in the transport sector by 2020. All transport modes are included in this target and different renewable energy sources are factored in differently, namely the contribution of advanced biofuels towards achieving the 10% target are accounted twice whereas electricity from renewable sources for road transport counts 2.5 times.
  2. Each Member State is requested to establish a national renewable energy action plan including information on sectoral targets. In addition, Member States should set out measures to achieve those targets, assessing the contribution of both energy efficiency and energy saving measures. Biofuels sustainability is required for feedstock and biofuels production as well as minimum greenhouse gas (GHG) savings per energy unit.

Fuel Quality Directive

The Fuel Quality Directive (2009/30/EC of 23 April 2009), so called FQD Directive, sets environmental requirements for petrol and diesel fuel in order to reduce their air pollutant emissions.

These requirements consist of technical specifications for fuel content and binding targets to reduce fuels’ life cycle greenhouse gas emissions. The Directive places the responsibility of reducing GHG emissions on fuel suppliers and the reporting on progress achieved on Member States.

Recent and on-going legislative developments

FQD Implementing Directive

The so-called “FQD Implementing Directive” (Directive EU 2015/652) prescribing the methodology to be used for calculating upstream emission reductions in the context of the FQD target was adopted on 20 April 2015. This directive sets out the average life cycle greenhouse gas intensity default values for fuels other than biofuels and electricity, and the 2010 fossil fuel baseline.

ILUC Directive

On 9 September 2015, Directive EU 2015/1513 – so-called “ILUC Directive” – was adopted. The “ILUC Directive” is in its essence the compromise text resulting from co-decision procedure (2012/0288 COD) to complete and revise the 2009 RED and FQD Directives.


Winter Package, 30/11/2016

The so-called “Winter package” adopted by the European Commission on 30 November 2016 comprising a package of measures to keep the European Union competitive as the clean energy transition is changing global energy markets.

Of relevance for JEC Collaboration, the revised proposal for a Renewable Energy Directive and its Annexes addresses the decarbonisation of the transport sector by:

  • Introducing an obligation on European transport fuel suppliers to provide an increasing  share  of  renewable   and   low-carbon   fuels,   including advanced  biofuels,  renewable  transport  fuels  of  non-biological  origin,  waste-based  fuels  and  renewable  electricity.  The level of this obligation is progressively increasing from 1.5% in 2021 (in energy terms) to 6.8 % in 2030, including at least 3.6% of advanced biofuels.  Preferential rules apply to advanced aviation fuels in order to support their deployment in the aviation sector (e.g. their energy content is accounted 20% more).
  • To minimize the Indirect Land-Use Change (ILUC) impacts, introducing  a  cap  on  the  contribution  of  food-based  biofuels  towards  the  EU  renewable  energy target,  starting  at  7%  in  2021  and  going  down progressively to 3.8% in 2030.
  • Introducing national databases to ensure traceability of the fuels and mitigate the risk of fraud.

The proposal for a Directive (COM(2016) 767 of 30 November 2016) on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources is subject to co-decision procedure (2016/0382 (COD)) by the European Parliament and the Council.


Regulation on CO2 from light duty vehicles

This regulation is currently under Regulation 443/2009 setting emission performance standards for new passenger cars as part of the European Union’s integrated approach to reduce CO2 emissions from light-duty vehicles (vehicles of category M1).


Emission standard for passenger cars and Heavy Duty vehicles

Regulation 715/2007 introduces new common requirements for emissions from motor vehicles and their specific replacement parts (Euro 5 and Euro 6 standards) for passenger cars, vans and light duty commercial vehicles (categories M1, M2, N1 and N2).

The Regulation covers a wide range of pollutant emissions: carbon monoxide (CO), non-methane hydrocarbons and total hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulates (PM). It covers tailpipe emissions, evaporative emissions and crankcase emissions.


Standards - Current European CEN Fuel Specifications

For pure bio-components:
  • Ethanol: EN15376 (for blending up to 5% in gasoline)
  • Fatty Acid Methyl Esters (FAME): EN14214

For gasoline:

  • 5% v/v (E5) ethanol and 2.7% oxygen (EN228)
  • 10% v/v (E10) ethanol and 3.7% oxygen wt% (EN 228)

Since 2009 with the implementation of the FQD the “E5” grade was required to be distributed in the EU market until at least 2013. EU Member States may decide to mandate a longer period of E5 distribution.

For diesel:

  • 7% v/v (B7) FAME in diesel fuel (EN590)
Generally speaking, there are no limits on addition of 2nd generation renewable diesel
  • Hydrogenated vegetable oils (HVO) and animal fats
  • Biomass-to-Liquids (BTL)

Relevant initiatives of the Member States

  • France: E10 (2009); B7 (2008) and B30 for captive fleets

  • Germany: B7 plus 3% renewable diesel (2008), B100 for specially adapted vehicles

  • B20 (Poland) and B30 (Czech Republic) for captive fleets

  • E85 in Austria, France, Germany, and Sweden

Standardisation of high quality fuels containing bio-components is essential to ensure trouble-free performance in the current/future fleet and to ensure a truly single, non-fragmented internal market.