EU Seeks to End Funding for Fossil Fuel Projects via Mandatory Sustainability Criteria
Brussels – The European Union is moving towards ending funding for fossil fuel projects by introducing mandatory sustainability criteria.
Ambassadors to the EU have just approved a provisional political agreement on the revision of the Trans-European Energy Networks (TEN-E) regulation, reached between the Council Presidency and European Parliament negotiators on 15 December. The new TEN-E rules will support the EU’s climate objectives and the Green Pact.
The agreement reached ensures that in the future no new fossil fuel projects will receive funding under the European Interconnection Mechanism,” said Jernej Vrtovec, Slovenia’s infrastructure minister, whose country holds the rotating Council presidency.
The agreement ensures “that we will invest in a green and climate-neutral future that guarantees efficiency, competitiveness and security of supply, leaving no one behind,” he further explained.
Negotiators from the Council, which represents the 27, and the Parliament have agreed on a number of points. These include ending support for new natural gas and oil projects, simplifying authorization procedures allowing, during a transitional period until December 31, 2029, the use of dedicated hydrogen assets converted from natural gas assets to transport or store a predefined mix of hydrogen with natural gas or bio-methane.
The Council agreed on a general orientation on TEN-E on 11 June 2021. The Council Presidency and the European Parliament negotiators reached a provisional political agreement during the trialogue negotiations on December 15, 2021. The new regulation will now be formally adopted by the Council and the European Parliament.