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Renewable energies and EU directives

09 January 2018

On November 28, 2017 the vote was taken on a Revision of the Renewable Energy Directive by the European Parliament.

  • BACKGROUND:

"In March 2013, the EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT approved the Energy Roadmap for 2050 asking the Commission to present as soon as possible a political framework by 2030, with milestones and targets on greenhouse gas emissions, renewable energy and energy efficiency

In February 2014, (Parliament) adopted a resolution criticizing the proposals presented by the Commission on a climate and energy framework by 2030, lacking broadmindedness and ambition. It requested the imposition of a mandatory 30% renewable energy quota on energy consumption at Union level, applicable through individual binding targets for each Member State, as well as an extension beyond 2020 of the objectives relating to the fuels used in transportation ".

 In October 2014, the EUROPEAN COUNCIL agreed on the EU's climate and energy action framework until 2030, setting an ambitious internal target applicable to the whole economy to reduce by at least 40% of greenhouse gas emissions greenhouse by 2030. The latest Paris Agreement converges with this EU approach.

In 2015, (the European Commission) presented a proposal to reform the Emission Rights Trade Regime (ETS) in order to ensure that the energy sector and high energy consumption industries achieve the necessary emission reductions.

In June 2016, Parliament adopted a resolution on the renewable energy situation report asking the Commission to present a more ambitious climate and energy package by 2030, in which the Union's objective is raised of renewable energy sources up to 30%, which would have to be achieved through individual national objectives.

In the summer of 2016, the Commission presented proposals to accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy in the other key sectors of the European economy.

On November 30, 2016 the EUROPEAN COMMISSION presented its objectives in a press release and in a report entitled "Clean energy for all Europeans".

In the press release: The Commission today presents a package of measures for (...) the transition to a clean energy. The Commission wants the EU not only to adapt to this transition, but to lead it. For this reason, the EU is committed to reducing CO2 emissions by at least 40% by 2030 and, at the same time, modernizing the EU economy and creating growth and jobs for all European citizens. Today's proposals (30 Nov 2016) have three fundamental objectives: prioritizing energy efficiency, becoming a world leader in renewable energies and offering fair treatment to consumers.

"Legislative proposals for clean energy for all Europeans cover energy efficiency, renewable energy, the design of the electricity market, the security of electricity supply and the governance standards of the Energy Union.

The Commission also proposes new perspectives of ecological design and a strategy for connected and automated mobility. The package also includes measures to accelerate innovation in clean energy and to renovate buildings in Europe, encourage public and private investment, promote the industrial competitiveness of the EU and mitigate the social impact of the transition to clean energy. "

In the Report: "This package represents an opportunity to accelerate both the transition to clean energy and the growth and creation of employment. With the mobilization of an additional amount of € 177 billion of public and private investment per year starting in 2021, this package can generate growth of up to 1% of GDP in the next decade and create 900,000 new jobs " . "It also means that, in 2030, on average, (...) renewable electricity will account for about half of the EU's electricity production mix." "The Commission has revised the EU's energy efficiency target, according to the request of the European Council in October 2014, and considers that the EU should establish a binding target at EU level of 30% by 2030. Compared to the target of at least 27% agreed in 2014 , this increase is expected to translate into an increase in GDP of up to € 70 billion and in the creation of more than 400,000 jobs, as well as a further reduction in the import bill for fossil fuels. The strengthened objective will also allow the EU to achieve the targets for 2030 in terms of reducing greenhouse gas and renewable energy emissions. "

On December 14, 2016, the Renewable Energy Foundation (FER), issues a report entitled EUROPEAN DIRECTIVE ON RENEWABLE ENERGY. CHALLENGE AND OPPORTUNITIES, after some days devoted to the evaluation of the aforementioned report of the European Commission, "Clean energy for all Europeans", a package of 38 documents and more than 1,000 pages of legislative proposals.

  • PRESENT:

Revision of the Renewables Directive. Prepared by the Spanish socialist José Blanco.

The Committee on Industry and Energy of the EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, on Tuesday, November 28, 2017, held a vote (43 +, 14 -, 7 abstentions) and approval of the following points:

Liberation of self-consumption. What would eliminate (by illegal according to EU rules) the so-called "sun tax". "Without having to pay any charge, fee or tax" according to the newsletter. There would be no more taxes on self-consumption. The right of citizens to the energy self-consumption that was proposed by the EUROPEAN COMMISSION is reinforced. The prohibition of tax or levy on self-consumption, is always that the generated electricity remains outside the network and does not suppose the first source of the home, according to 20 minutes. The "sun tax" was the popular name given to a government decree of 2015 (Soria as minister of the sector) that "forced self-consumption facilities with installed power of more than 10 kw to pay a charge on electricity self produced and consumed instantaneously ". The Commission's proposal includes "evaluating the existing barriers to consume energy produced in its own facilities". The text aims to promote renewable energy cooperatives based on the joint installation of solar panels, according to the report.

Raise renewable targets by 2030. If in 2014 the target of renewables was set at 27%, it is now approved to raise this objective to 35%. A margin of 10% is established to achieve this objective. Improve the EU's energy efficiency by 40% by 2030, compared to the previous 30%, set by the COMMISSION.

Criticism of the Directive Review: This last point, in a low scenario, could reduce this 35%, to figures slightly higher than 30%. Another criticism of these percentage targets (identified by the Spanish Florent Marcelles de (EQUO) and member of the PE Industry and Energy Commission) according to 20 minutes, is that it is established for the EU as a whole, without establishing quotas by country , "Without fixing a binding distribution at the state level of the contribution of each member state", according to areinfo. This would hinder the measures to be adopted with respect to those states that do not reach the objectives.

Some Associations of the sector have stated that the objective should have been 45% (this would allow the objective of the Paris Climate Summit to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5 Co) and state objectives (each country responds of its figures), according to areinfo.com.

Ecological associations have criticized that within the minimum of 12% of renewable energies in transport by 2030, biofuels are included, which according to them, contribute to polluting emissions, according to 20minutos.com.

  • EPILOGUE:

For December 18, 2017 a meeting is scheduled in the EUROPEAN COUNCIL of the energy ministers of the member countries, to agree on the planned reforms.

In Feb-2018 will be voted (also by the Energy Commission of the EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT) on the reform of the regulations of the electricity sector.

On the other hand, a wide group of Sector Associations of our country, issues a Report under the title of: Basic scope of the auctions for the acquisition of electrical energy produced with renewable energy sources, in which the main recommendable points are established. According to its general considerations: "The objective of this document is to establish the basic rules that should be considered in the definition and scope of the auction mechanism for the incorporation of different renewable technologies in the basket of electricity generation in Spain." which is, logically, a proposal of intentions, among which the following is included: "The offer period for the projects will be 20 years, this number being flexible depending on the technology. After that time, the plants will be able to benefit from the latest auction for this technology for minimum periods of 5 years ".

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