France: Ségolène Royal unveils ambitious energy bill
The long-awaited energy bill was presented by Ségolène Royal, French energy and environment minister, on June 18. The legislation aims to cut France’s energy consumption in half by 2050 in comparison with 2012, to reduce the use of fossil fuels by 30 % and to bring the share of renewable energy in final energy consumption to 32 % in 2030.
The bill must now be approved by several government commissions before a vote at the National Assembly that would not take place before the autumn of 2014. In parallel, in order to strengthen the legislation, a roadmap for the development of renewable energy sources is currently being finalised and should be made public by mid-August.
As Ségolène Royal reiterated on several occasions, it is expected that this roadmap will contain actions to promote the uptake and to underline the importance of biogas and biomethane production in the French energy transition. In total, the number of biogas installations should reach 1 500 during the next three years. For this to happen, the preparation works for the construction of biogas plants should be simplified as to be conducted within two years and not within four years as it is currently the case.
In a press release published on June 23, the Biogas Club of the Technical Association for Energy and the Environment (ATEE Club Biogaz) welcomed the ambitious initiative regarding the promotion of the biogas sector by Sénègole Royal, but called for a revision of the budget proposed to be allocated to this area. According to the calculations of the Biogas Club, 100 million Euros will not be sufficient to reach 1 500 biogas units in three years.
The press release of ATEE Club Biogaz is available for download here.