SEE Region, European Commission referred Croatia, Hungary and Portugal to court for failing to transpose renewable energy directive

, SEE Energy News

The European Commission (EC) decided to refer Croatia, Hungary and Portugal to the Court of Justice of the European Union with a request to impose financial sanctions for failing to transpose the EU’s Renewable Energy Directive into national legislation. The EC is taking legal steps to ensure the development of renewable energy across the EU and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, energy dependency and high prices.

Member states were required to transpose the Directive by 30 June 2021. The EC has been providing continuous support to the member states to transpose the rules, but Croatia, Hungary and Portugal have so far failed to notify appropriately where they have transposed each provision of the Directive in their national legislation. In July 2021, the EC sent a letter of formal notice to all member states. In May 2022, after assessing the transposition measures notified by these three member states, the Commission issued reasoned opinions urging them to comply with the obligation to indicate in a sufficiently clear and precise manner all the national measures by which they considered the Directive transposed.

To date Croatia, Hungary and Portugal are the only three member states who have failed to notify any correlation table or explanatory document specifying where they have transposed each provision of the Directive.

The Renewable Energy Directive, adopted in 2018, provides the legal framework for the development of renewable energy in electricity, heating and cooling, and transport in the EU during this decade.

It sets an EU-level binding target for 2030 of at least 32 % renewable energy and includes measures to ensure support for renewable energy is cost-effective, and to simplify administrative procedures for renewable energy projects. It also facilitates the participation of citizens in the energy transition by enabling self-consumption and the setup of renewable energy communities.

In addition, it sets specific targets to increase the share of renewables in the heating and cooling and transport sectors by 2030, where the progress of renewables has been slower than in the electricity sector. Furthermore, it strengthens criteria to ensure the sustainability of bioenergy.

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