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European Commission Refers Ireland to Court Over Renewable Energy Directive

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European Commission Refers Ireland to Court Over Renewable Energy Directive

European Commission Refers Ireland to Court Over Renewable Energy Directive
January 24
12:47 2014

The European Commission is referring Ireland to the Court of Justice of the European Union for failing to fully transpose the Renewable Energy Directive. The Directive aims at ensuring a 20% share of renewable energy in the EU by 2020. The Directive had to be transposed by the Member States by 5 December 2010.

“It is essential that all the Member States implement the renewable energy legislation. Renewables are vital for the security of supply and European economic growth. They are key in mitigating global climate change,” says Commissioner Oettinger, the EU Energy Commissioner.

The Commission proposes a daily penalty of €25 447.5. The penalties proposed take into account the duration and the gravity of the infringement. In case of an affirmative judgement of the Court, the daily penalty is to be paid from the date of the judgment until the transposition is completed. The final amount of the daily penalties will be decided by the Court.

The Commission has addressed the issue of non-transposition of the Directive by sending a letter of formal notice to Ireland in January 2011 and a reasoned opinion in June 2012. Despite these proceedings, full transposition is still pending in Ireland.

Ireland has already adopted a considerable amount of legislation required by the Directive. However, some provisions still remain to be transposed into national law. In particular, these provisions relate to the national 10% target for renewables in transport, the streamlining of administrative procedures, the management of grid access for electricity from renewable sources, and to sustainability criteria for biofuels and bioliquids. Ensuring the achievement of the national targets, easier procedures, adequate grid access and the sustainability of biofuels and bioliquids are priorities for the Commission.

The Commission has already referred Austria, Poland and Cyprus to the Court for failing to transpose the Renewable Energy Directive. It is also examining the situation in other Member States to which it has addressed letters of formal notice and/or reasoned opinions on this issue. Therefore, today’s Commission action might be complemented by further referrals to the Court over the next months.

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