Opinion Factsheet  

Uued suunised riigiabi kohta energeetika valdkonnas

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Opinion Number: CDR 8053/2013
Rapporteur: 
Commission: ENVE
Status: Adopted
Date: 02/04/2014
 
From the local and regional point of view, the new guidelines should ideally increase aid thresholds and aid intensities, and specifically extend the scope of the application of the General Block Exemption Regulation (i.e, cases when no prior notification is required.)
This extension of scope could apply to such locally and regionally important areas as combined heat and power production. Moreover, it might be necessary to call for district heating to be included in the new Guidelines, subject to environmental conditionality.
THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS



- draws attention to the difficulty of reconciling the competition framework at EU level, for which the EU has exclusive competence, with the fundamental principles of EU energy policy, which provide for shared competence between the EU and its Member States, whilst taking account of the subsidiarity principle and the important role of local and regional authorities, especially local and regional energy agencies;

- calls for local and regional beneficiaries to be included in drafting aid schemes, and advocates a guarantee of transparency in all decisions to be taken concerning state aid for energy;

- has reservations about the Commission's intention to replace the feed-in tariff for energy from renewables, whereby green energy producers receive a fixed price per kWh, with feed-in premiums;

- asks that the eligibility ceiling for aid for alternative energy production installations starting commercial production for the first time and for small plants be increased to 5MW, and to 15MW for wind power plants;

- wonders whether the specific reference to CCS (carbon capture and storage) technology is compatible with the principle of being technology neutral which the Commission espouses elsewhere; and points out that subsidies for fossil fuels should be axed in the short term as they result in distorted competition and considerable environmental costs. At the same time, market principles should also apply to nuclear energy, which should not be included in the guidelines for state aid for energy;

- endorses the CEDEC (European Federation of Local Energy Companies) opinion as regards facilitating investments in smart distribution technologies for electricity networks.

Importance

High
Medium
Low
 

Rapporteur's activities

An article entitled "Why we need European state aid to support the energy market" by the rapporteur was published in the Guardian.

 
14 Aug
 

Rapporteur's activities

EU Energy Week – Session with the other institutions, NGOs and stakeholders.Continuation of the rapporteur's/ ENVE members' discussions with experts, practitioners and policymakers to support the CoR's position concerning the shortcomings of the new guidelines and an in-depth exploration of the possibilities to operate under the new conditions at the local and regional level.

 
25 Jun
 

European Commission

Meeting with Jasmin Battista from the cabinet of the Energy Commissioner Mr Oettinger. Follow up suggested: invitation of Ms Battista to an ENVE meeting to present the new guidelines, how to apply them and the rationale behind them. ENVE members to give their feedback on how they encounter the application of the rules and the kind of energy projects they have in their local and regional authorities.

 
25 Jun
 

European Commission

On 9 April 2014 the Commission adopted new Guidelines on environmental and energy aid for 2014-2020.

 
08 Apr
 

CoR Plenary Session

The opinion was adopted during the CoR Plenary Session - Press Release

 
01 Apr
 

CoR Commission activity

The draft opinion was discussed and adopted during the commission meeting

 
11 Feb
 

CoR Commission activity

Statement by Mr Claude TURMES(MEP) and discussion during the ENVE commission meeting. A partial convergence between the CoR and EP position on the potential problems from the proposed new rules to local and regional renewable energy projects was noted.

 
11 Feb
 

CoR Commission activity

The Rapporteur invites local and regional authorities to participate in the EC public consultation via the ENVE website. The received summaries of local and regional authorities' position on the future guidelines provided the rapporteur with input for his opinion.

 
23 Jan
 

European Commission

The E.C. launches a stakeholder consultation which will run till 14th February 2014

 
17 Dec
 

Rapporteur's activities

Meeting with the EC DG COMP in order to create reciprocal awareness of key local and regional aspects which are to be considered within the forthcoming EC proposal on future state aid guidelines for energy, notably in relation to the stakeholder consultation to be launched in December 2013

 
03 Dec
 

Rapporteur's activities

Mr Graas participated in the Eurelectric Conference on Future State Aid Guidelines in Brussels.

 
01 Dec
 

CoR Commission activity

 
 

The ENVE commission nominated Mr Gusty Graas (LU/ALDE) as rapporteur for the own-initiative opinion on "New guidelines for state aid in the field of energy"

 
30 Nov