The European Commission publishes its Energy Summer Package

On the 15th of July the European Commission published a set of proposals as part of the EU’s Energy Union Strategy.

This is the first set of proposals to be published after the Energy Union Strategy, which was announced last February. This package seeks to strengthen the EU’s energy market, while putting a strong focus on climate change mitigation ahead of the COP21 negotiations in Paris at the end of 2015.

The four elements of the package are:

  1. Revision of the EU’s Emissions Trading System – This legislative proposal aims to strengthen ETS so that the EU can match its GHG emission reduction commitments by 2030. In practice, this would put a higher price on carbon (the current system is weak), encouraging the industry to move towards renewables and energy saving technologies. Under a working ETS, the biogas and biomethane sectors would become more competitive.
  2. Communication on a New energy market design – This non-legislative document tackles the main barriers in today’s electricity markets and outlines desired outcomes; renewables have a prominent role. The Commission also opened a Market design consultation which is directly related to the previously mentioned communication. Legislative proposal will follow in the second half of 2016.
  3. Revision of the Energy efficiency label – This legislative proposal aims to update the current EU energy labelling system which applies to a large range of domestic appliances, so as to make it clearer for consumers.
  4. Communication on a New Deal for Energy Consumers – This non-legislative paper aims to make more information available to consumers as well as to enable them to generate and consume their own energy (something that could be beneficial for many biogas producers). The Communication explains that these consumer objectives will be included in new EU legislative proposals; the Commission also calls for national legislators to take these objectives into account.