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Dods European Energy Policy Update - September 2012 Nyomtatás E-mail

Dods European Energy Policy Update - September 2012

Welcome to your European Energy Policy Update provided by Dods EU Monitoring. This newsletter is produced on a monthly basis and will serve to keep you abreast of the top developments, events and announcements on energy policy at EU level. Divided into four sections you will find information covering activity of the European Commission, Council and Parliament as well as from non-institutional stakeholders.


MiFID II adopted in ECON committe

On September 26th 2012, the Parliament’s ECON committee unanimously adopted its draft reports on MiFID II. The reports aim at laying down uniform trading rules for firms selling investment products, investment service providers and regulated markets (including commodities), whilst also providing an enhanced level of consumer protection. Following the vote, the rapporteur, Markus Ferber (EPP, DE) said “we need to reduce the speculative share in commodities without destroying the market altogether. We think that position limits can achieve this”.
Timetable: Plenary - October 23rd 2012
Documents: Consolidated reports soon here, EPP, S&D, ALDE, Greens/EFA , ECR, Labour Party in EP, BEUC, Europolitics

Commission investigates Gazprom for anti-competitive practices

The European Commission has opened formal proceedings to investigate whether Gazprom has been engaging in anti-competitive practices in Central and Eastern Europe, thus breaching antitrust rules. Gazprom is suspected of a) dividing gas markets by hindering the free flow of gas across Member States, b) preventing the diversification of supply of gas, and c) imposing unfair prices on its customers by linking the price of gas to oil prices. Gazprom responded to the Commission announcement by denying the company had received any such notification, and insisting that it abides by all international and national laws where they operate.

Consultation on Implementation of a Data and Transaction reporting Framework for Wholesale Energy Markets

The Commission has launched a public consultation that aims to assist the Commission in the preparation of implementing acts to be adopted in accordance with Articles 8(2), 8(5) and 21(2) of the October 2011 regulation on wholesale energy market integrity and transparency (REMIT). A wide range of stakeholders, in and outside of the EU, are invited to contribute their comments by December 7th 2012.

Other Commission news


Reports & studies

Informal energy Council focussed on TEN-E and renewables

The informal Council contributed to finalising draft conclusions, prepared by the Cyprus Presidency, on the June 2012 communication on Renewable energy’s role in the EU energy market. The final conclusions are to be adopted at the December 3rd 2012 Energy Council. Neoklis Sylikiotis, Cypriot Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, stated in a press conference that the Presidency proposes to include “the improvement of support schemes, the strengthening of cooperation and trade in RES, the integration of RES in the internal energy market, the promotion of the necessary infrastructure, the development and strengthening of the cooperation with Mediterranean countries, the promotion of technological innovation and the creation of new jobs” in the text.  On the Trans-European Energy Infrastructure (TEN-E), the Presidency received widespread support to conclude the agreement on the proposed dossier before the end of the year. Other topics discussed included the funding priorities, the role of regional entities in identifying projects of common interest (PCIs) as well as the regulatory treatment and the streamlining of permit granting procedures.
Documents: Cyprus Presidency, Cyprus Presidency II

EU and Member State statements on international climate negotiation groups

In the run up to the UN Climate Change Conference COP18 taking place in Doha between November 26th and December 7th 2012, the Council has published statements delivered by the EU at: informal sessions of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP 17), the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA 15) and the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action.

Other Council news

Parliament formally adopts agreement on Energy Efficiency

The September plenary session saw the adoption of the agreement reached with the Council and Commission on the Energy Efficiency directive with 632 votes in favour, 25 against and 19 abstentions. The Parliament’s rapporteur, Claude Turmes (Greens/EFA, LU), was pleased with the compromise but thought there would be an additional need for implementation guidance. On the next steps, the Council is likely to formally adopt the agreement in an upcoming Council meeting (tbc), after which the directive will enter into force 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal and member states will have 18 months to transpose it into their national laws.
Timetable: Council formal adoption in upcoming Council (tbc), directive enters into force 20 days after publication in the OJ, transposition by member states within 18 months.
Documents: EP, Council, EPP, S&D, ALDE, Greens/EFA, BEUC

Progress on safety of offshore oil and gas prospection, exploration and production

The ENVI committee discussed and adopted its opinion on the safety of offshore oil and gas prospection, exploration and production in September. Its adoption by a large majority confirmed its call to the Commission to strengthen measures in its proposal to protect the environment during such activities. It was mainly the ECR and EFD groups voting against the text. Draftsperson Justas Vincas Paleckis (S&D, LT) commented: "There must be a clear obligation for operators to put in place the financial guarantees necessary to cover the costs of cleaning up and compensation in the event of a major accident.” Additionally, the committee narrowly voted for the instrument to be changed from a Regulation to a Directive (24 votes to 23 against), which the rapporteur in the lead ITRE committee, Ivo Belet (EPP, BE) and most shadow rapporteurs are also in favour of.

The JURI committee also adopted its opinion, and the ITRE committee discussed amendments to the draft report in September. The main issues raised in these were: the financial capacity of operators to pay for the costs of accidents, worker participation (consultation), EMSA’s role, second or third party verification, standards for global operations, definitions and the Arctic.
Timetable: ITRE adoption October 8-9th 2012, plenary December 11th 2012 (tbc).
Documents: Council published a third revision (found here in the directive format) for further deliberation, ENVI opinion, EP, S&D, Struan Stevenson, ENVI draft recommendation on Med exploration (new)

Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) discussed in detail

The three rapporteurs of the joint ITRE/TRAN draft report on the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) remain strong supporters of the initiative. Adina-Ioana Valean (ALDE, RO), however, warned her colleagues that the budget for the CEF may shrink due to pressure from the Council in negotiations on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). She added, during the joint committee discussion on the draft report, that the EU must act carefully in order to avoid market distortion and ensure leverage of scared resources. The funds for energy infrastructure should have a multiplier effect to reach the level of investment needed, she added. In a REGI committee discussion, Constanze Krehl (S&D, DE) said "There were many amendments seeking to take the CEF out of the Common Provisions [Cohesion funds] regulation completely, so we made a huge effort to find a compromise that could be carried by a majority of this committee". The BUDG committee also adopted its opinion in September.
Timetable: ITRE/TRAN adoption November 29th 2012, plenary January 2013 (tbc)
Documents: EP press, Legislative Observatory

Parliament adopts position on intergovernmental agreements between Member States and third countries in the field of energy

The Parliament adopted its first reading position on setting up an information exchange mechanism for intergovernmental agreements between Member States and third countries in the field of energy. The amendments were the result of a compromise negotiated between Parliament and Council. The initiative is aimed at enabling the European Commission to vet all deals for compatibility with EU law, but will also enable the Commission to support member states, at their request, in cases like that which arose in 2010, when the Commission backed Poland's request for access to the Polish section of the Yamal natural gas pipeline, which is partly owned by Russian gas giant Gazprom, reports the Parliament press service.
Documents: EC, EP, EP II, Legislative observatory

ITRE adopts negotiating mandate on TEN-E guidelines

The ITRE committee has adopted a negotiating mandate on the Trans-European Energy Infrastructure (TEN-E) regulation, with the hope of reaching a first reading agreement with the Council and Commission through trialogue negotiations.
Timetable: Official adoption of EP position after trialogue negotiations.
Documents: ITRE adopted amendments, EP, Cyprus Presidency, S&D, Greenpeace, ITRE subject file

ENVI & ITRE adopt draft reports on shale gas and oil

The ENVI committee adopted its report on the environmental impacts of shale gas and shale oil extraction activities, and the ITRE committee its report on the industrial, energy and other aspects of shale gas and oil activities.
Timetable: Plenary adoption October 2012
Documents: Consolidated ENVI report soon here, consolidated ITRE report soon here, EP press, EP memo, EPP, S&D, Greens/EFA, Labour party

Negotiating mandate adopted on accounting and transparency requirements for extractive activities in third countries

The JURI committee adopted negotiating mandates on the proposals imposing obligations on large companies extracting oil, gas, minerals and logging, to provide full disclosure of payments to national governments, on a country by country and project by project basis this September.
Timetable: Plenary adoption January 2013, depending on trialogue negotiations.
Documents: JURI negotiating mandates soon published here, EP press, S&D, Greens/EFA, Oxfam/Eurodad, Legislative observatory (accounting), Legislative observatory (transparency)

Energy Roadmap 2050 discussed

The ITRE committee held a hearing on the non-legislative Energy Roadmap 2050 on September 18th 2012. Please view panelist presentations for details of the discussions. The IMCO committee also held its first exchange of views, where draftsperson Olle Schmidt (ALDE, SE) expressed his concerns over the number of presumptions in the scenarios, but felt the need for urgent decisions to guide industry and investment.
Documents: IMCO draft opinion, AFET draft opinion, REGI draft opinion, ECOFYS, Legislative observatory

ITRE discusses role of EU cohesion policy and its actors in implementing new European energy policy

The ITRE committee discussed its draft opinion on the role of EU cohesion policy and its actors in implementing new European energy policy on September 3rd 2012. The draftsperson, Ioan Enciu (S&D, RO), in terms of energy infrastructure said no region should remain isolated from the networks after 2015 or suffer from inadequate connection to them. He felt that structural funds and other financial instruments should be available for energy efficiency projects across all sector.
Documents: Legislative observatory

Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER)

European Energy Regulators (CEER)




European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU)


Please follow the links to access agendas, press releases and presentations where available.

European Commission

Council of the European Union

European Parliament





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