Clean Energy Package: debates in EP and Council heating up

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Following high-level launches of discussions on the Clean Energy Package in both the European Parliament (EP) and Council in December, January and February, technical debates on the eight legislative proposals of the package are now ongoing. In February, the EP’s lead ITRE Committee debated the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) and Renewable Energy (RES) Directive proposals. Now, on 22-23 March, ITRE exchanged views on the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) and Governance proposals. During the same session, ITRE also held a hearing on the package (see Orgalime report).

In short, the Greens and S&D (Socialist) political groups aim to strengthen both proposals, be it regarding future energy efficiency targets or more ambition in the governance regulation, in terms of making it a multilayer approach in which citizens, cities and proactive companies would be directly involved. Governments alone could not be expected to deliver. The EPP more often than not seems more cautious in committing to requirements.

EED Rapporteur Gierek (EPP) sees the need to look at the biggest efficiency losses, including in production and transit of energy and in housing, which is promising. At the same time, many MEPs continue defending the Emissions Trading System (ETS), while it is becoming increasingly clear that the ETS cannot be realistically expected to give a sufficient investment signal.

Meanwhile, disappointing compromise suggestions of the Maltese Presidency on the EED and EPBD proposals have informally leaked, confirming Member States’ reluctance to make energy efficiency commitments. We therefore reiterate our recommendation to members to strongly lobby at national level. Orgalime’s overview on the EP’s timetable and key players are available on the Extranet.

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