The EU’s Clean Energy Package – what progress after 6 months?

Cillian Totterdell, Samuel Ribansky

Prior to the release of what was then colloquially referred to as the ‘Winter Package’, the European Commission promised to deliver a legislative package that will have European energy consumers at its heart. After a little more than six months of work on the file, it is useful to see where the jumbo package stands.

First, it is worth noting that the Council and the Parliament have embarked on divergent paths in terms of their ambition. While the Parliament has strived to increase the ambition of the package, the Council it would seem has done just the opposite.

Second, we have seen a disproportionate attention paid to different proposals of the Clean Energy Package given the priorities of the Maltese and Estonian Presidencies respectively, the Energy Efficiency and Energy Performance of Buildings Directives have seen a significantly more progress than the remaining proposals. However, the Parliament managed to strike a slightly more balanced approach and as such having published draft reports on all of the proposals, including amendments to some of them.

Third, further to inter-institutional divisions, the premier 6 months experienced intra-institutional political division as well. Renewable energy in transport, annual end-user energy savings obligations, competencies in ensuring the security of electricity supply, and the deployment of infrastructure for electro-mobility have all seen fierce debate as the Council and Parliament seek to finalise their positions.

With all that being said, we can see that while a lot of the heavy lifting has been done, even more lies ahead. The Estonian Presidency states that it wanted to be the Presidency of general approaches with Bulgaria being the Presidency of trilogues. Even if Estonia manages to achieve general approaches on all of the CEP files, we do not expect to see final deals on the individual files before Austria assumes the presidency in Q3 2018. If you are looking for a more detailed analysis of the Clean Energy Package, you can find it here!