Energy Council concludes on Energy Union and sets agenda for next EU Presidency

Publish date: June 10, 2015

On 8 June 2015 the EU Energy Council met in Brussels to discuss the Energy Security Strategy and adopt conclusions on the implementation of the Energy Union. On the latter, the Council encouraged initiatives to provide instruments that can bring new technologies to the market, including carbon capture and storage (CCS) and sustainable low-carbon technologies for industry.

The Conclusions follow those of 19 and 20 March 2015, which confirmed the EU’s commitment to building an Energy Union with a forward looking climate policy. The latest Conclusions now draw focus to the role of the consumer and on incentivising investment, and it is in this second section that CCS is highlighted.

The Council calls for newer low carbon technologies like CCS to be brought to the market, both to achieve climate targets and to secure and promote growth and jobs.

The text agreed upon, Conclusions on the implementation of the Energy Union: empowering consumers and attracting investments in the energy sector, can be found here.

ETS reform update

While intense work is being undertaken in the Commission to progress the proposal for a reform of the EU’s Emission Trading System (ETS) – the EU’s central funding instrument for CCS – the Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Arias Cañete, told press following the Council meeting that the ETS reform proposal is unlikely to be presented before the summer.

The ETS reform proposal was expected to be part of the ‘summer package’ to be presented on 14 July. This package is otherwise set to include a Consultative Communication on Electricity Market Design and on Retail Markets (New Deal for Consumers) as well as a legislative proposal on for the revision of the Energy Labelling Directive.

The ETS reform proposal is now likely scheduled to come following the summer break. The autumn will otherwise continue to be a busy period with the Commission also set to present the first annual State of the Energy Union Report, including country fiches for each country, as well as a proposal on Energy Union Governance.

Work plan of next Presidency

The upcoming Luxembourgish Presidency of the EU Council also presented a preliminary work programme for Energy Council, which apart from implementation of a governance of the Energy Union includes:

  • Review of the regulation on security of gas supply
  • Work on forthcoming market design and market retail communications
  • Organisation of a SET-Plan Conference
  • Financing issues relating to a sustainable energy transition, in light of the implementation of European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI)
  • Pursuit of international energy relations

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