Search Legislation

Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the CouncilShow full title

Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources and amending and subsequently repealing Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC (Text with EEA relevance)

 Help about what version

What Version

More Resources

Close

This is a legislation item that originated from the EU

After exit day there will be three versions of this legislation to consult for different purposes. The legislation.gov.uk version is the version that applies in the UK. The EU Version currently on EUR-lex is the version that currently applies in the EU i.e you may need this if you operate a business in the EU.

The web archive version is the official version of this legislation item as it stood on exit day before being published to legislation.gov.uk and any subsequent UK changes and effects applied. The web archive also captured associated case law and other language formats from EUR-Lex.

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally adopted).

Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council

of 23 April 2009

on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources and amending and subsequently repealing Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC

(Text with EEA relevance)

THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,

Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community, and in particular Article 175(1) thereof, and Article 95 thereof in relation to Articles 17, 18 and 19 of this Directive,

Having regard to the proposal from the Commission,

Having regard to the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee(1),

Having regard to the opinion of the Committee of the Regions(2),

Acting in accordance with the procedure laid down in Article 251 of the Treaty(3),

Whereas:

(1) The control of European energy consumption and the increased use of energy from renewable sources, together with energy savings and increased energy efficiency, constitute important parts of the package of measures needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and comply with the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and with further Community and international greenhouse gas emission reduction commitments beyond 2012. Those factors also have an important part to play in promoting the security of energy supply, promoting technological development and innovation and providing opportunities for employment and regional development, especially in rural and isolated areas.

(2) In particular, increasing technological improvements, incentives for the use and expansion of public transport, the use of energy efficiency technologies and the use of energy from renewable sources in transport are some of the most effective tools by which the Community can reduce its dependence on imported oil in the transport sector, in which the security of energy supply problem is most acute, and influence the fuel market for transport.

(3) The opportunities for establishing economic growth through innovation and a sustainable competitive energy policy have been recognised. Production of energy from renewable sources often depends on local or regional small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The opportunities for growth and employment that investment in regional and local production of energy from renewable sources bring about in the Member States and their regions are important. The Commission and the Member States should therefore support national and regional development measures in those areas, encourage the exchange of best practices in production of energy from renewable sources between local and regional development initiatives and promote the use of structural funding in this area.

(4) When favouring the development of the market for renewable energy sources, it is necessary to take into account the positive impact on regional and local development opportunities, export prospects, social cohesion and employment opportunities, in particular as concerns SMEs and independent energy producers.

(5) In order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions within the Community and reduce its dependence on energy imports, the development of energy from renewable sources should be closely linked to increased energy efficiency.

(6) It is appropriate to support the demonstration and commercialisation phase of decentralised renewable energy technologies. The move towards decentralised energy production has many benefits, including the utilisation of local energy sources, increased local security of energy supply, shorter transport distances and reduced energy transmission losses. Such decentralisation also fosters community development and cohesion by providing income sources and creating jobs locally.

(7) Directive 2001/77/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 September 2001 on the promotion of electricity produced from renewable energy sources in the internal electricity market(4) and Directive 2003/30/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 8 May 2003 on the promotion of the use of biofuels or other renewable fuels for transport(5) established definitions for different types of energy from renewable sources. Directive 2003/54/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2003 concerning common rules for the internal market in electricity(6) established definitions for the electricity sector in general. In the interests of legal certainty and clarity it is appropriate to use the same or similar definitions in this Directive.

(8) The Commission communication of 10 January 2007 entitled ‘Renewable Energy Roadmap — Renewable energies in the 21st century: building a more sustainable future’ demonstrated that a 20 % target for the overall share of energy from renewable sources and a 10 % target for energy from renewable sources in transport would be appropriate and achievable objectives, and that a framework that includes mandatory targets should provide the business community with the long-term stability it needs to make rational, sustainable investments in the renewable energy sector which are capable of reducing dependence on imported fossil fuels and boosting the use of new energy technologies. Those targets exist in the context of the 20 % improvement in energy efficiency by 2020 set out in the Commission communication of 19 October 2006 entitled ‘Action Plan for Energy Efficiency: Realising the Potential’, which was endorsed by the European Council of March 2007, and by the European Parliament in its resolution of 31 January 2008 on that Action Plan.

(9) The European Council of March 2007 reaffirmed the Community’s commitment to the Community-wide development of energy from renewable sources beyond 2010. It endorsed a mandatory target of a 20 % share of energy from renewable sources in overall Community energy consumption by 2020 and a mandatory 10 % minimum target to be achieved by all Member States for the share of biofuels in transport petrol and diesel consumption by 2020, to be introduced in a cost-effective way. It stated that the binding character of the biofuel target is appropriate, subject to production being sustainable, second-generation biofuels becoming commercially available and Directive 98/70/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 October 1998 relating to the quality of petrol and diesel fuels(7) being amended to allow for adequate levels of blending. The European Council of March 2008 repeated that it is essential to develop and fulfil effective sustainability criteria for biofuels and ensure the commercial availability of second-generation biofuels. The European Council of June 2008 referred again to the sustainability criteria and the development of second-generation biofuels, and underlined the need to assess the possible impacts of biofuel production on agricultural food products and to take action, if necessary, to address shortcomings. It also stated that further assessment should be made of the environmental and social consequences of the production and consumption of biofuels.

(10) In its resolution of 25 September 2007 on the Road Map for Renewable Energy in Europe(8), the European Parliament called on the Commission to present, by the end of 2007, a proposal for a legislative framework for energy from renewable sources, referring to the importance of setting targets for the shares of energy from renewable sources at Community and Member State level.

(11) It is necessary to set transparent and unambiguous rules for calculating the share of energy from renewable sources and for defining those sources. In this context, the energy present in oceans and other water bodies in the form of waves, marine currents, tides, ocean thermal energy gradients or salinity gradients should be included.

(12) The use of agricultural material such as manure, slurry and other animal and organic waste for biogas production has, in view of the high greenhouse gas emission saving potential, significant environmental advantages in terms of heat and power production and its use as biofuel. Biogas installations can, as a result of their decentralised nature and the regional investment structure, contribute significantly to sustainable development in rural areas and offer farmers new income opportunities.

(13) In the light of the positions taken by the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission, it is appropriate to establish mandatory national targets consistent with a 20 % share of energy from renewable sources and a 10 % share of energy from renewable sources in transport in Community energy consumption by 2020.

(14) The main purpose of mandatory national targets is to provide certainty for investors and to encourage continuous development of technologies which generate energy from all types of renewable sources. Deferring a decision about whether a target is mandatory until a future event takes place is thus not appropriate.

(15) The starting point, the renewable energy potential and the energy mix of each Member State vary. It is therefore necessary to translate the Community 20 % target into individual targets for each Member State, with due regard to a fair and adequate allocation taking account of Member States’ different starting points and potentials, including the existing level of energy from renewable sources and the energy mix. It is appropriate to do this by sharing the required total increase in the use of energy from renewable sources between Member States on the basis of an equal increase in each Member State’s share weighted by their GDP, modulated to reflect their starting points, and by accounting in terms of gross final consumption of energy, with account being taken of Member States’ past efforts with regard to the use of energy from renewable sources.

(16) By contrast, it is appropriate for the 10 % target for energy from renewable sources in transport to be set at the same level for each Member State in order to ensure consistency in transport fuel specifications and availability. Because transport fuels are traded easily, Member States with low endowments of the relevant resources will easily be able to obtain biofuels from elsewhere. While it would technically be possible for the Community to meet its target for the use of energy from renewable sources in transport solely from domestic production, it is both likely and desirable that the target will in fact be met through a combination of domestic production and imports. To this end, the Commission should monitor the supply of the Community market for biofuels, and should, as appropriate, propose relevant measures to achieve a balanced approach between domestic production and imports, taking into account, inter alia, the development of multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations, environmental, social and economic considerations, and the security of energy supply.

(17) The improvement of energy efficiency is a key objective of the Community, and the aim is to achieve a 20 % improvement in energy efficiency by 2020. That aim, together with existing and future legislation including Directive 2002/91/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2002 on the energy performance of buildings(9), Directive 2005/32/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2005 establishing a framework for the setting of ecodesign requirements for energy-using products(10), and Directive 2006/32/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 April 2006 on energy end-use efficiency and energy services(11), has a critical role to play in ensuring that the climate and energy objectives are being achieved at least cost, and can also provide new opportunities for the European Union’s economy. Energy efficiency and energy saving policies are some of the most effective methods by which Member States can increase the percentage share of energy from renewable sources, and Member States will thus more easily achieve the overall national and transport targets for energy from renewable sources laid down by this Directive.

(18) It will be incumbent upon Member States to make significant improvements in energy efficiency in all sectors in order more easily to achieve their targets for energy from renewable sources, which are expressed as a percentage of gross final consumption of energy. The need for energy efficiency in the transport sector is imperative because a mandatory percentage target for energy from renewable sources is likely to become increasingly difficult to achieve sustainably if overall demand for energy for transport continues to rise. The mandatory 10 % target for transport to be achieved by all Member States should therefore be defined as that share of final energy consumed in transport which is to be achieved from renewable sources as a whole, and not from biofuels alone.

(19) To ensure that the mandatory national overall targets are achieved, Member States should work towards an indicative trajectory tracing a path towards the achievement of their final mandatory targets. They should establish a national renewable energy action plan including information on sectoral targets, while having in mind that there are different uses of biomass and therefore it is essential to mobilise new biomass resources. In addition, Member States should set out measures to achieve those targets. Each Member State should assess, when evaluating its expected gross final consumption of energy in its national renewable energy action plan, the contribution which energy efficiency and energy saving measures can make to achieving its national targets. Member States should take into account the optimal combination of energy efficiency technologies with energy from renewable sources.

(20) To permit the benefits of technological progress and economies of scale to be reaped, the indicative trajectory should take into account the possibility of a more rapid growth in the use of energy from renewable sources in the future. Thus special attention can be given to sectors that suffer disproportionately from the absence of technological progress and economies of scale and therefore remain under-developed, but which, in future, could significantly contribute to reaching the targets for 2020.

(21) The indicative trajectory should take 2005 as its starting point because that is the latest year for which reliable data on national shares of energy from renewable sources are available.

(22) The achievement of the objectives of this Directive requires that the Community and Member States dedicate a significant amount of financial resources to research and development in relation to renewable energy technologies. In particular, the European Institute of Innovation and Technology should give high priority to the research and development of renewable energy technologies.

(23) Member States may encourage local and regional authorities to set targets in excess of national targets and to involve local and regional authorities in drawing up national renewable energy action plans and in raising awareness of the benefits of energy from renewable sources.

(24) In order to exploit the full potential of biomass, the Community and the Member States should promote greater mobilisation of existing timber reserves and the development of new forestry systems.

(25) Member States have different renewable energy potentials and operate different schemes of support for energy from renewable sources at the national level. The majority of Member States apply support schemes that grant benefits solely to energy from renewable sources that is produced on their territory. For the proper functioning of national support schemes it is vital that Member States can control the effect and costs of their national support schemes according to their different potentials. One important means to achieve the aim of this Directive is to guarantee the proper functioning of national support schemes, as under Directive 2001/77/EC, in order to maintain investor confidence and allow Member States to design effective national measures for target compliance. This Directive aims at facilitating cross-border support of energy from renewable sources without affecting national support schemes. It introduces optional cooperation mechanisms between Member States which allow them to agree on the extent to which one Member State supports the energy production in another and on the extent to which the energy production from renewable sources should count towards the national overall target of one or the other. In order to ensure the effectiveness of both measures of target compliance, i.e. national support schemes and cooperation mechanisms, it is essential that Member States are able to determine if and to what extent their national support schemes apply to energy from renewable sources produced in other Member States and to agree on this by applying the cooperation mechanisms provided for in this Directive.

(26) It is desirable that energy prices reflect external costs of energy production and consumption, including, as appropriate, environmental, social and healthcare costs.

(27) Public support is necessary to reach the Community’s objectives with regard to the expansion of electricity produced from renewable energy sources, in particular for as long as electricity prices in the internal market do not reflect the full environmental and social costs and benefits of energy sources used.

(28) The Community and the Member States should strive to reduce total consumption of energy in transport and increase energy efficiency in transport. The principal means of reducing consumption of energy in transport include transport planning, support for public transport, increasing the share of electric cars in production and producing cars which are more energy efficient and smaller both in size and in engine capacity.

(29) Member States should aim to diversify the mix of energy from renewable sources in all transport sectors. The Commission should present a report to the European Parliament and the Council by 1 June 2015 outlining the potential for increasing the use of energy from renewable sources in each transport sector.

(30) In calculating the contribution of hydropower and wind power for the purposes of this Directive, the effects of climatic variation should be smoothed through the use of a normalisation rule. Further, electricity produced in pumped storage units from water that has previously been pumped uphill should not be considered to be electricity produced from renewable energy sources.

(31) Heat pumps enabling the use of aerothermal, geothermal or hydrothermal heat at a useful temperature level need electricity or other auxiliary energy to function. The energy used to drive heat pumps should therefore be deducted from the total usable heat. Only heat pumps with an output that significantly exceeds the primary energy needed to drive it should be taken into account.

(32) Passive energy systems use building design to harness energy. This is considered to be saved energy. To avoid double counting, energy harnessed in this way should not be taken into account for the purposes of this Directive.

(33) Some Member States have a large share of aviation in their gross final consumption of energy. In view of the current technological and regulatory constraints that prevent the commercial use of biofuels in aviation, it is appropriate to provide a partial exemption for such Member States, by excluding from the calculation of their gross final consumption of energy in national air transport, the amount by which they exceed one-and-a-half times the Community average gross final consumption of energy in aviation in 2005, as assessed by Eurostat, i.e. 6,18 %. Cyprus and Malta, due to their insular and peripheral character, rely on aviation as a mode of transport, which is essential for their citizens and their economy. As a result, Cyprus and Malta have a gross final consumption of energy in national air transport which is disproportionally high, i.e. more than three times the Community average in 2005, and are thus disproportionately affected by the current technological and regulatory constraints. For those Member States it is therefore appropriate to provide that the exemption should cover the amount by which they exceed the Community average gross final consumption of energy in aviation in 2005 as assessed by Eurostat, i.e. 4,12 %.

(34) To obtain an energy model that supports energy from renewable sources there is a need to encourage strategic cooperation between Member States, involving, as appropriate, regions and local authorities.

(35) Whilst having due regard to the provisions of this Directive, Member States should be encouraged to pursue all appropriate forms of cooperation in relation to the objectives set out in this Directive. Such cooperation can take place at all levels, bilaterally or multilaterally. Apart from the mechanisms with effect on target calculation and target compliance, which are exclusively provided for in this Directive, namely statistical transfers between Member States, joint projects and joint support schemes, cooperation can also take the form of, for example, exchanges of information and best practices, as provided for, in particular, in the transparency platform established by this Directive, and other voluntary coordination between all types of support schemes.

(36) To create opportunities for reducing the cost of achieving the targets laid down in this Directive, it is appropriate both to facilitate the consumption in Member States of energy produced from renewable sources in other Member States, and to enable Member States to count energy from renewable sources consumed in other Member States towards their own national targets. For this reason, flexibility measures are required, but they remain under Member States’ control in order not to affect their ability to reach their national targets. Those flexibility measures take the form of statistical transfers, joint projects between Member States or joint support schemes.

(37) It should be possible for imported electricity, produced from renewable energy sources outside the Community, to count towards Member States’ targets. However, to avoid a net increase in greenhouse gas emissions through the diversion of existing renewable sources and their complete or partial replacement by conventional energy sources, only electricity produced by renewable energy installations that become operational after the entry into force of this Directive or by the increased capacity of an installation that was refurbished after that date should be eligible to be counted. In order to guarantee an adequate effect of energy from renewable sources replacing conventional energy in the Community as well as in third countries it is appropriate to ensure that such imports can be tracked and accounted for in a reliable way. Agreements with third countries concerning the organisation of such trade in electricity from renewable energy sources will be considered. If, by virtue of a decision taken under the Energy Community Treaty(12) to that effect, the contracting parties to that treaty become bound by the relevant provisions of this Directive, the measures of cooperation between Member States provided for in this Directive will be applicable to them.

(38) When Member States undertake joint projects with one or more third countries regarding the production of electricity from renewable energy sources, it is appropriate that those joint projects relate only to newly constructed installations or to installations with newly increased capacity. This will help ensure that the proportion of energy from renewable sources in the third country’s total energy consumption is not reduced due to the importation of energy from renewable sources into the Community. In addition, the Member States concerned should facilitate the domestic use by the third country concerned of part of the production of electricity by the installations covered by the joint project. Furthermore, the third country concerned should be encouraged by the Commission and Member States to develop a renewable energy policy, including ambitious targets.

(39) Noting that projects of high European interest in third countries, such as the Mediterranean Solar Plan, may need a long lead-time before being fully interconnected to the territory of the Community, it is appropriate to facilitate their development by allowing Member States to take into account in their national targets a limited amount of electricity produced by such projects during the construction of the interconnection.

(40) The procedure used by the administration responsible for supervising the authorisation, certification and licensing of renewable energy plants should be objective, transparent, non-discriminatory and proportionate when applying the rules to specific projects. In particular, it is appropriate to avoid any unnecessary burden that could arise by classifying renewable energy projects under installations which represent a high health risk.

(41) The lack of transparent rules and coordination between the different authorisation bodies has been shown to hinder the deployment of energy from renewable sources. Therefore the specific structure of the renewable energy sector should be taken into account when national, regional and local authorities review their administrative procedures for giving permission to construct and operate plants and associated transmission and distribution network infrastructures for the production of electricity, heating and cooling or transport fuels from renewable energy sources. Administrative approval procedures should be streamlined with transparent timetables for installations using energy from renewable sources. Planning rules and guidelines should be adapted to take into consideration cost-effective and environmentally beneficial renewable heating and cooling and electricity equipment.

(42) For the benefit of rapid deployment of energy from renewable sources and in view of their overall high sustainable and environmental beneficial quality, Member States should, when applying administrative rules, planning structures and legislation which are designed for licensing installations with respect to pollution reduction and control for industrial plants, for combating air pollution and for the prevention or minimisation of the discharge of dangerous substances in the environment, take into account the contribution of renewable energy sources towards meeting environmental and climate change objectives, in particular when compared to non-renewable energy installations.

(43) In order to stimulate the contribution by individual citizens to the objectives set out in this Directive, the relevant authorities should consider the possibility of replacing authorisations by simple notifications to the competent body when installing small decentralised devices for producing energy from renewable sources.

(44) The coherence between the objectives of this Directive and the Community’s other environmental legislation should be ensured. In particular, during the assessment, planning or licensing procedures for renewable energy installations, Member States should take account of all Community environmental legislation and the contribution made by renewable energy sources towards meeting environmental and climate change objectives, in particular when compared to non-renewable energy installations.

(45) National technical specifications and other requirements falling within the scope of Directive 98/34/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 June 1998 laying down a procedure for the provision of information in the field of technical standards and regulations and rules on Information Society services(13), relating for example to levels of quality, testing methods or conditions of use, should not create barriers for trade in renewable energy equipment and systems. Therefore, support schemes for energy from renewable sources should not prescribe national technical specifications which deviate from existing Community standards or require the supported equipment or systems to be certified or tested in a specified location or by a specified entity.

(46) It is appropriate for Member States to consider mechanisms for the promotion of district heating and cooling from energy from renewable sources.

(47) At national and regional level, rules and obligations for minimum requirements for the use of energy from renewable sources in new and renovated buildings have led to considerable increases in the use of energy from renewable sources. Those measures should be encouraged in a wider Community context, while promoting the use of more energy-efficient applications of energy from renewable sources through building regulations and codes.

(48) It may be appropriate for Member States, in order to facilitate and accelerate the setting of minimum levels for the use of energy from renewable sources in buildings, to provide that such levels are achieved by incorporating a factor for energy from renewable sources in meeting minimum energy performance requirements under Directive 2002/91/EC, relating to a cost-optimal reduction of carbon emissions per building.

(49) Information and training gaps, especially in the heating and cooling sector, should be removed in order to encourage the deployment of energy from renewable sources.

(50) In so far as the access or pursuit of the profession of installer is a regulated profession, the preconditions for the recognition of professional qualifications are laid down in Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on the recognition of professional qualifications(14). This Directive therefore applies without prejudice to Directive 2005/36/EC.

(51) While Directive 2005/36/EC lays down requirements for the mutual recognition of professional qualifications, including for architects, there is a further need to ensure that architects and planners properly consider an optimal combination of renewable energy sources and high-efficiency technologies in their plans and designs. Member States should therefore provide clear guidance in this regard. This should be done without prejudice to the provisions of Directive 2005/36/EC and in particular Articles 46 and 49 thereof.

(52) Guarantees of origin issued for the purpose of this Directive have the sole function of proving to a final customer that a given share or quantity of energy was produced from renewable sources. A guarantee of origin can be transferred, independently of the energy to which it relates, from one holder to another. However, with a view to ensuring that a unit of electricity from renewable energy sources is disclosed to a customer only once, double counting and double disclosure of guarantees of origin should be avoided. Energy from renewable sources in relation to which the accompanying guarantee of origin has been sold separately by the producer should not be disclosed or sold to the final customer as energy from renewable sources. It is important to distinguish between green certificates used for support schemes and guarantees of origin.

(53) It is appropriate to allow the emerging consumer market for electricity from renewable energy sources to contribute to the construction of new installations for energy from renewable sources. Member States should therefore be able to require electricity suppliers who disclose their energy mix to final customers in accordance with Article 3(6) of Directive 2003/54/EC, to include a minimum percentage of guarantees of origin from recently constructed installations producing energy from renewable sources, provided that such a requirement is in conformity with Community law.

(54) It is important to provide information on how the supported electricity is allocated to final customers in accordance with Article 3(6) of Directive 2003/54/EC. In order to improve the quality of that information to consumers, in particular as regards the amount of energy from renewable sources produced by new installations, the Commission should assess the effectiveness of the measures taken by Member States.

(55) Directive 2004/8/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 February 2004 on the promotion of cogeneration based on a useful heat demand in the internal energy market(15) provides for guarantees of origin for proving the origin of electricity produced from high-efficiency cogeneration plants. Such guarantees of origin cannot be used when disclosing the use of energy from renewable sources in accordance with Article 3(6) of Directive 2003/54/EC as this might result in double counting and double disclosure.

(56) Guarantees of origin do not by themselves confer a right to benefit from national support schemes.

(57) There is a need to support the integration of energy from renewable sources into the transmission and distribution grid and the use of energy storage systems for integrated intermittent production of energy from renewable sources.

(58) The development of renewable energy projects, including renewable energy projects of European interest under the Trans-European Network for Energy (TEN-E) programme should be accelerated. To that end, the Commission should also analyse how the financing of such projects can be improved. Particular attention should be paid to renewable energy projects that will contribute to a significant increase in security of energy supply in the Community and neighbouring countries.

(59) Interconnection among countries facilitates integration of electricity from renewable energy sources. Besides smoothing out variability, interconnection can reduce balancing costs, encourage true competition bringing about lower prices, and support the development of networks. Also, the sharing and optimal use of transmission capacity could help avoid excessive need for newly built capacity.

(60) Priority access and guaranteed access for electricity from renewable energy sources are important for integrating renewable energy sources into the internal market in electricity, in line with Article 11(2) and developing further Article 11(3) of Directive 2003/54/EC. Requirements relating to the maintenance of the reliability and safety of the grid and to the dispatching may differ according to the characteristics of the national grid and its secure operation. Priority access to the grid provides an assurance given to connected generators of electricity from renewable energy sources that they will be able to sell and transmit the electricity from renewable energy sources in accordance with connection rules at all times, whenever the source becomes available. In the event that the electricity from renewable energy sources is integrated into the spot market, guaranteed access ensures that all electricity sold and supported obtains access to the grid, allowing the use of a maximum amount of electricity from renewable energy sources from installations connected to the grid. However, this does not imply any obligation on the part of Member States to support or introduce purchase obligations for energy from renewable sources. In other systems, a fixed price is defined for electricity from renewable energy sources, usually in combination with a purchase obligation for the system operator. In such a case, priority access has already been given.

(61) In certain circumstances it is not possible fully to ensure transmission and distribution of electricity produced from renewable energy sources without affecting the reliability or safety of the grid system. In such circumstances it may be appropriate for financial compensation to be given to those producers. Nevertheless, the objectives of this Directive require a sustained increase in the transmission and distribution of electricity produced from renewable energy sources without affecting the reliability or safety of the grid system. To this end, Member States should take appropriate measures in order to allow a higher penetration of electricity from renewable energy sources, inter alia, by taking into account the specificities of variable resources and resources which are not yet storable. To the extent required by the objectives set out in this Directive, the connection of new renewable energy installations should be allowed as soon as possible. In order to accelerate grid connection procedures, Member States may provide for priority connection or reserved connection capacities for new installations producing electricity from renewable energy sources.

(62) The costs of connecting new producers of electricity and gas from renewable energy sources to the electricity and gas grids should be objective, transparent and non-discriminatory and due account should be taken of the benefit that embedded producers of electricity from renewable energy sources and local producers of gas from renewable sources bring to the electricity and gas grids.

(63) Electricity producers who want to exploit the potential of energy from renewable sources in the peripheral regions of the Community, in particular in island regions and regions of low population density, should, whenever feasible, benefit from reasonable connection costs in order to ensure that they are not unfairly disadvantaged in comparison with producers situated in more central, more industrialised and more densely populated areas.

(64) Directive 2001/77/EC lays down the framework for the integration into the grid of electricity from renewable energy sources. However, there is a significant variation between Member States in the degree of integration actually achieved. For this reason it is necessary to strengthen the framework and to review its application periodically at national level.

(65) Biofuel production should be sustainable. Biofuels used for compliance with the targets laid down in this Directive, and those that benefit from national support schemes, should therefore be required to fulfil sustainability criteria.

(66) The Community should take appropriate steps in the context of this Directive, including the promotion of sustainability criteria for biofuels and the development of second and third-generation biofuels in the Community and worldwide, and to strengthen agricultural research and knowledge creation in those areas.

(67) The introduction of sustainability criteria for biofuels will not achieve its objective if those products that do not fulfil the criteria and would otherwise have been used as biofuels are used, instead, as bioliquids in the heating or electricity sectors. For this reason, the sustainability criteria should also apply to bioliquids in general.

(68) The European Council of March 2007 invited the Commission to propose a comprehensive Directive on the use of all renewable energy sources, which could contain criteria and provisions to ensure sustainable provision and use of bioenergy. Such sustainability criteria should form a coherent part of a wider scheme covering all bioliquids and not biofuels alone. Such sustainability criteria should therefore be included in this Directive. In order to ensure a coherent approach between energy and environment policies, and to avoid the additional costs to business and the environmental incoherence that would be associated with an inconsistent approach, it is essential to provide the same sustainability criteria for the use of biofuels for the purposes of this Directive on the one hand, and Directive 98/70/EC on the other. For the same reasons, double reporting should be avoided in this context. Furthermore, the Commission and the competent national authorities should coordinate their activities in the framework of a committee specifically responsible for sustainability aspects. The Commission should, in addition, in 2009, review the possible inclusion of other biomass applications and the modalities relating thereto.

(69) The increasing worldwide demand for biofuels and bioliquids, and the incentives for their use provided for in this Directive, should not have the effect of encouraging the destruction of biodiverse lands. Those finite resources, recognised in various international instruments to be of value to all mankind, should be preserved. Consumers in the Community would, in addition, find it morally unacceptable that their increased use of biofuels and bioliquids could have the effect of destroying biodiverse lands. For these reasons, it is necessary to provide sustainability criteria ensuring that biofuels and bioliquids can qualify for the incentives only when it can be guaranteed that they do not originate in biodiverse areas or, in the case of areas designated for nature protection purposes or for the protection of rare, threatened or endangered ecosystems or species, the relevant competent authority demonstrates that the production of the raw material does not interfere with those purposes. The sustainability criteria should consider forest as biodiverse where it is a primary forest in accordance with the definition used by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) in its Global Forest Resource Assessment, which countries use worldwide to report on the extent of primary forest or where it is protected by national nature protection law. Areas where collection of non-wood forest products occurs should be included, provided the human impact is small. Other types of forests as defined by the FAO, such as modified natural forests, semi-natural forests and plantations, should not be considered as primary forests. Having regard, furthermore, to the highly biodiverse nature of certain grasslands, both temperate and tropical, including highly biodiverse savannahs, steppes, scrublands and prairies, biofuels made from raw materials originating in such lands should not qualify for the incentives provided for by this Directive. The Commission should establish appropriate criteria and geographical ranges to define such highly biodiverse grasslands in accordance with the best available scientific evidence and relevant international standards.

(70) If land with high stocks of carbon in its soil or vegetation is converted for the cultivation of raw materials for biofuels or bioliquids, some of the stored carbon will generally be released into the atmosphere, leading to the formation of carbon dioxide. The resulting negative greenhouse gas impact can offset the positive greenhouse gas impact of the biofuels or bioliquids, in some cases by a wide margin. The full carbon effects of such conversion should therefore be accounted for in calculating the greenhouse gas emission saving of particular biofuels and bioliquids. This is necessary to ensure that the greenhouse gas emission saving calculation takes into account the totality of the carbon effects of the use of biofuels and bioliquids.

(71) In calculating the greenhouse gas impact of land conversion, economic operators should be able to use actual values for the carbon stocks associated with the reference land use and the land use after conversion. They should also be able to use standard values. The work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is the appropriate basis for such standard values. That work is not currently expressed in a form that is immediately applicable by economic operators. The Commission should therefore produce guidance drawing on that work to serve as the basis for the calculation of carbon stock changes for the purposes of this Directive, including such changes to forested areas with a canopy cover of between 10 to 30 %, savannahs, scrublands and prairies.

(72) It is appropriate for the Commission to develop methodologies with a view to assessing the impact of the drainage of peatlands on greenhouse gas emissions.

(73) Land should not be converted for the production of biofuels if its carbon stock loss upon conversion could not, within a reasonable period, taking into account the urgency of tackling climate change, be compensated by the greenhouse gas emission saving resulting from the production of biofuels or bioliquids. This would prevent unnecessary, burdensome research by economic operators and the conversion of high-carbon-stock land that would prove to be ineligible for producing raw materials for biofuels and bioliquids. Inventories of worldwide carbon stocks indicate that wetlands and continuously forested areas with a canopy cover of more than 30 % should be included in that category. Forested areas with a canopy cover of between 10 and 30 % should also be included, unless there is evidence demonstrating that their carbon stock is sufficiently low to justify their conversion in accordance with the rules laid down in this Directive. The reference to wetlands should take into account the definition laid down in the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Waterfowl Habitat, adopted on 2 February 1971 in Ramsar.

(74) The incentives provided for in this Directive will encourage increased production of biofuels and bioliquids worldwide. Where biofuels and bioliquids are made from raw material produced within the Community, they should also comply with Community environmental requirements for agriculture, including those concerning the protection of groundwater and surface water quality, and with social requirements. However, there is a concern that production of biofuels and bioliquids in certain third countries might not respect minimum environmental or social requirements. It is therefore appropriate to encourage the development of multilateral and bilateral agreements and voluntary international or national schemes that cover key environmental and social considerations, in order to promote the production of biofuels and bioliquids worldwide in a sustainable manner. In the absence of such agreements or schemes, Member States should require economic operators to report on those issues.

(75) The requirements for a sustainability scheme for energy uses of biomass, other than bioliquids and biofuels, should be analysed by the Commission in 2009, taking into account the need for biomass resources to be managed in a sustainable manner.

(76) Sustainability criteria will be effective only if they lead to changes in the behaviour of market actors. Those changes will occur only if biofuels and bioliquids meeting those criteria command a price premium compared to those that do not. According to the mass balance method of verifying compliance, there is a physical link between the production of biofuels and bioliquids meeting the sustainability criteria and the consumption of biofuels and bioliquids in the Community, providing an appropriate balance between supply and demand and ensuring a price premium that is greater than in systems where there is no such link. To ensure that biofuels and bioliquids meeting the sustainability criteria can be sold at a higher price, the mass balance method should therefore be used to verify compliance. This should maintain the integrity of the system while at the same time avoiding the imposition of an unreasonable burden on industry. Other verification methods should, however, be reviewed.

(77) Where appropriate, the Commission should take due account of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment which contains useful data for the conservation of at least those areas that provide basic ecosystem services in critical situations such as watershed protection and erosion control.

(78) It is appropriate to monitor the impact of biomass cultivation, such as through land-use changes, including displacement, the introduction of invasive alien species and other effects on biodiversity, and effects on food production and local prosperity. The Commission should consider all relevant sources of information, including the FAO hunger map. Biofuels should be promoted in a manner that encourages greater agricultural productivity and the use of degraded land.

(79) It is in the interests of the Community to encourage the development of multilateral and bilateral agreements and voluntary international or national schemes that set standards for the production of sustainable biofuels and bioliquids, and that certify that the production of biofuels and bioliquids meets those standards. For that reason, provision should be made for such agreements or schemes to be recognised as providing reliable evidence and data, provided that they meet adequate standards of reliability, transparency and independent auditing.

(80) It is necessary to lay down clear rules for the calculation of greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels and bioliquids and their fossil fuel comparators.

(81) Co-products from the production and use of fuels should be taken into account in the calculation of greenhouse gas emissions. The substitution method is appropriate for the purposes of policy analysis, but not for the regulation of individual economic operators and individual consignments of transport fuels. In those cases the energy allocation method is the most appropriate method, as it is easy to apply, is predictable over time, minimises counter-productive incentives and produces results that are generally comparable with those produced by the substitution method. For the purposes of policy analysis the Commission should also, in its reporting, present results using the substitution method.

(82) In order to avoid a disproportionate administrative burden, a list of default values should be laid down for common biofuel production pathways and that list should be updated and expanded when further reliable data is available. Economic operators should always be entitled to claim the level of greenhouse gas emission saving for biofuels and bioliquids established by that list. Where the default value for greenhouse gas emission saving from a production pathway lies below the required minimum level of greenhouse gas emission saving, producers wishing to demonstrate their compliance with this minimum level should be required to show that actual emissions from their production process are lower than those that were assumed in the calculation of the default values.

(83) It is appropriate for the data used in the calculation of the default values to be obtained from independent, scientifically expert sources and to be updated as appropriate as those sources progress their work. The Commission should encourage those sources to address, when they update their work, emissions from cultivation, the effect of regional and climatological conditions, the effects of cultivation using sustainable agricultural and organic farming methods, and the scientific contribution of producers, within the Community and in third countries, and civil society.

(84) In order to avoid encouraging the cultivation of raw materials for biofuels and bioliquids in places where this would lead to high greenhouse gas emissions, the use of default values for cultivation should be limited to regions where such an effect can reliably be ruled out. However, to avoid a disproportionate administrative burden, it is appropriate for Member States to establish national or regional averages for emissions from cultivation, including from fertiliser use.

(85) Global demand for agricultural commodities is growing. Part of that increased demand will be met through an increase in the amount of land devoted to agriculture. The restoration of land that has been severely degraded or heavily contaminated and therefore cannot be used, in its present state, for agricultural purposes is a way of increasing the amount of land available for cultivation. The sustainability scheme should promote the use of restored degraded land because the promotion of biofuels and bioliquids will contribute to the growth in demand for agricultural commodities. Even if biofuels themselves are made using raw materials from land already in arable use, the net increase in demand for crops caused by the promotion of biofuels could lead to a net increase in the cropped area. This could affect high carbon stock land, which would result in damaging carbon stock losses. To alleviate that risk, it is appropriate to introduce accompanying measures to encourage an increased rate of productivity on land already used for crops, the use of degraded land, and the adoption of sustainability requirements, comparable to those laid down in this Directive for Community biofuel consumption, in other biofuel-consuming countries. The Commission should develop a concrete methodology to minimise greenhouse gas emissions caused by indirect land-use changes. To this end, the Commission should analyse, on the basis of best available scientific evidence, in particular, the inclusion of a factor for indirect land-use changes in the calculation of greenhouse gas emissions and the need to incentivise sustainable biofuels which minimise the impacts of land-use change and improve biofuel sustainability with respect to indirect land-use change. In developing that methodology, the Commission should address, inter alia, the potential indirect land-use changes resulting from biofuels produced from non-food cellulosic material and from ligno-cellulosic material.

(86) In order to permit the achievement of an adequate market share of biofuels, it is necessary to ensure the placing on the market of higher blends of biodiesel in diesel than those envisaged by standard EN590/2004.

(87) In order to ensure that biofuels that diversify the range of feedstocks used become commercially viable, those biofuels should receive an extra weighting under national biofuel obligations.

(88) Regular reporting is needed to ensure a continuing focus on progress in the development of energy from renewable sources at national and Community level. It is appropriate to require the use of a harmonised template for national renewable energy action plans which Member States should submit. Such plans could include estimated costs and benefits of the measures envisaged, measures relating to the necessary extension or reinforcement of the existing grid infrastructure, estimated costs and benefits to develop energy from renewable sources in excess of the level required by the indicative trajectory, information on national support schemes and information on their use of energy from renewable sources in new or renovated buildings.

(89) When designing their support systems, Member States may encourage the use of biofuels which give additional benefits, including the benefits of diversification offered by biofuels made from waste, residues, non-food cellulosic material, ligno-cellulosic material and algae, as well as non-irrigated plants grown in arid areas to fight desertification, by taking due account of the different costs of producing energy from traditional biofuels on the one hand and of those biofuels that give additional benefits on the other. Member States may encourage investment in research and development in relation to those and other renewable energy technologies that need time to become competitive.

(90) The implementation of this Directive should reflect, where relevant, the provisions of the Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters, in particular as implemented through Directive 2003/4/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 January 2003 on public access to environmental information(16).

(91) The measures necessary for the implementation of this Directive should be adopted in accordance with Council Decision 1999/468/EC of 28 June 1999 laying down the procedures for the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission(17).

(92) In particular, the Commission should be empowered to adapt the methodological principles and values necessary for assessing whether sustainability criteria have been fulfilled in relation to biofuels and bioliquids, to adapt the energy content of transport fuels to technical and scientific progress, to establish criteria and geographic ranges for determining highly biodiverse grassland, and to establish detailed definitions for severely degraded or contaminated land. Since those measures are of general scope and are designed to amend non-essential elements of this Directive, inter alia, by supplementing it with new non-essential elements, they must be adopted in accordance with the regulatory procedure with scrutiny provided for in Article 5a of Decision 1999/468/EC.

(93) Those provisions of Directive 2001/77/EC and Directive 2003/30/EC that overlap with the provisions of this Directive should be deleted from the latest possible moment for transposition of this Directive. Those that deal with targets and reporting for 2010 should remain in force until the end of 2011. It is therefore necessary to amend Directive 2001/77/EC and Directive 2003/30/EC accordingly.

(94) Since the measures provided for in Articles 17 to 19 also have an effect on the functioning of the internal market by harmonising the sustainability criteria for biofuels and bioliquids for the target accounting purposes under this Directive, and thus facilitate, in accordance with Article 17(8), trade between Member States in biofuels and bioliquids which comply with those conditions, they are based on Article 95 of the Treaty.

(95) The sustainability scheme should not prevent Member States from taking into account, in their national support schemes, the higher production cost of biofuels and bioliquids that deliver benefits that exceed the minima laid down in the sustainability scheme.

(96) Since the general objectives of this Directive, namely to achieve a 20 % share of energy from renewable sources in the Community’s gross final consumption of energy and a 10 % share of energy from renewable sources in each Member State’s transport energy consumption by 2020, cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States and can therefore, by reason of the scale of the action, be better achieved at Community level, the Community may adopt measures, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty. In accordance with the principle of proportionality, as set out in that Article, this Directive does not go beyond what is necessary in order to achieve those objectives.

(97) In accordance with point 34 of the Interinstitutional agreement on better law-making(18), Member States are encouraged to draw up, for themselves and in the interest of the Community, their own tables illustrating, as far as possible, the correlation between this Directive and the transposition measures and to make them public,

HAVE ADOPTED THIS DIRECTIVE:

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As adopted by EU): The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was first adopted in the EU. No changes have been applied to the text.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as adopted version that was used for the EU Official Journal
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as adopted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources