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'Clean energy for all' pledge from EC

EUROPE: The European Commission (EC) has put forward a package of measures, including plans to support renewable energy investments, as it continues its clean energy transition.

Maros Sefcovic speaks to delegates at the Paris 2015 WindEurope (EWEA) conference
Maros Sefcovic speaks to delegates at the Paris 2015 WindEurope (EWEA) conference

EC vice president for energy union Maros Sefcovic, and commissioner for climate action Miguel Arias Canete presented the proposals in Brussels. 

The new measures in the so-called "Winter Package" include plans to help renewables compete on a level playing field with other forms of energy generation. 

"In order to better accommodate the rising share of renewables, wholesale markets have to further develop and... provide adequate rules allowing shorter term trading to reflect the necessities of variable generation," the EC said.

"Renewables producers will be able to earn revenues from the market, including system service markets that are required to maintain grid stability and security," it added. 

However, the EC will also remove priority dispatch for new renewable energy capacity.

Other measures included a "streamlining of administrative procedures including for repowering, a grandfathering clause to protect existing investment from regulatory changes and, crucially, three-years of visibility for renewable energy support (indicative timeline, volumes and budgets)," trade body WindEurope explained.

"In addition, Member States will be required to remove regulatory barriers to long-term provider/purchaser contracts for renewables (so called corporate PPAs)," WindEurope said. 

Giles Dickson, CEO of WindEurope, welcomed the package of measures but challenged the EC to go further.

"There is still a lot of work to do in the Parliament and the Council to ensure renewables investors stick with Europe after 2020," he said.

"If Europe is going to deliver on its goal to be number one in renewables, the Commission's proposals have to be further developed."

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