Energy: EU priority projects should be aligned with 2050 climate objectives

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The Commission should update its guidelines to select priority energy projects so that the next EU list is in line with its climate policy, said the Energy Committee.

The revision of the TEN-E guidelines, to be proposed by the European Commission later this year, should be consistent with EU energy and climate targets for 2030, its long-term commitment on decarbonisation and the energy efficiency first principle, say MEPs from the Industry, Research and Energy Committee, in a resolution adopted on Tuesday.

In order to ensure that the projects selected for the next PCI (projects of common interest) list are in line with the EU’s climate commitments, MEPs call on the Commission to also propose transitional guidance before the end of 2020. To be granted PCI status, projects must contribute to keep the energy supply affordable – one of the five dimensions of the Energy union, with which projects must be aligned, they say.

The TEN-E regulation was set up in 2013, before the Paris Agreement was adopted, and several developments have since significantly changed the landscape for energy policy, MEPs recall.

Next steps

The non-binding resolution was adopted with 55 votes to 15. It will be put to a vote in the full House in March. The plenary already held a debate on an oral question on this topic.

Background

The European Parliament rejected an objection to the 4th PCI list last week, following a debate with the European Commission.

Under the Trans-European Network-Energy (TEN-E) Regulation, adopted in 2013, the Commission identifies the most important PCIs across the EU, so that these projects can benefit from simplified permits and the right to apply for EU funding from the Connecting Europe Facility.

Most projects aim at ensuring undisrupted delivery of electricity and gas to all parts of the EU, by closing cross-border gaps in the network and enhancing local storage capacity.

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