EU moves to rein in state support for renewable energy

Apr 09, 2014
The Scroby Sands wind farm off the coast of Norfolk, England

The European Union announced Wednesday sweeping new guidelines to curtail state support for the renewable energy industry which Brussels says is harming the sector on the global market.

The new guidelines released by the European Commission, the EU's executive, require the bloc's 28 member countries to gradually replace ad hoc renewable energy subsidies with a competitive bidding process for allocating public support.

Joaquin Almunia, the EU's competition commissioner, said the guidelines were designed to end "illegal" state renewable energy subsidies which had created market "distortions" and led to higher prices which have harmed European industries.

However, Almunia also announced a long list of European companies which would be shielded from the new guidelines through "special treatment," arguing they were "especially exposed" to foreign competition.

The guidelines also steered clear of intervening in the United Kingdom's controversial state support of a nuclear energy project, with Almunia claiming the Commission's "lack of expertise" meant the guidelines would not cover nuclear energy.

Explore further: Just how green is wind power?

Related Stories

EU signals end to high subsidies for renewable energy

Nov 05, 2013

The European Commission issued new guidelines Tuesday which could end costly and controversial subsidies for renewable energy, opening the way for state-aid backing of gas or coal-fired electricity generation ...

European Commission: Google decision near

Sep 25, 2013

Europe's top competition official says his agency is close to a decision in its three-year investigation into whether Google Inc. has abused its dominant position in Internet searches to unfairly thwart competition.

EU ups pressure on Google in antitrust case (Update)

Jan 15, 2014

The European Union's antitrust watchdog is increasing pressure on Google to swiftly provide better proposals to address allegations the firm is abusing its dominant position in Internet searches.

EU launches probe into suspected chipmaker cartel

Apr 22, 2013

EU anti-trust authorities announced on Monday a formal cartel probe into smartcard chipmakers—the motors for everything from bank and mobile SIM cards to electronic ID papers, after talks aimed at securing ...

EU warns Nokia not to become 'patent troll'

Dec 09, 2013

Europe's top regulator has warned Nokia not to try to become a "patent troll" after the Finnish company sold most of its cellphone-making business to Microsoft Corp. this year but retained its patent portfolio.

European commission: decision on Google in weeks

Sep 13, 2013

(AP)—The European Commission's top competition regulator, Joaquin Almunia, says he will decide within several weeks whether the concessions offered by Google Inc. in how it displays search results are sufficient to ensure ...

Recommended for you

Colombia transforms old tires into green housing

2 hours ago

The highlands around the Colombian capital are scattered with small buildings that look like out-of-place igloos but are in fact innovative houses made from the tires that litter the country's roads.

Just how green is wind power?

12 hours ago

Wind power may have a positive image, but setting up offshore wind farms is complicated and energy-intensive. Because Siemens promises its customers and the authorities a high degree of transparency for the ...

Solar Impulse departs Myanmar for China

Mar 29, 2015

Solar Impulse 2 took off from Myanmar's second biggest city of Mandalay early Monday and headed for China's Chongqing, the fifth flight of a landmark journey to circumnavigate the globe powered solely by ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.