European Commission, Competition DG

EU guidelines on state aid for environmental protection

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Courtesy of Courtesy of European Commission, Competition DG

States and EU institutions to pursue actions to develop asustainable integrated European climate and energy policy.
The Council stated among other things: ‘Given that energy production and use are the main sources for greenhouse
gas emissions, an integrated approach to climate and energy policy is needed to realise this objective. Integration
should be achieved in a mutually supportive way. Wit this in mind, the Energy Policy for Europe (EPE) will pursue the
following three objectives, fully respecting Member States’ choice of energy mix and sovereignty over primary energy
sources and underpinned by a spirit of solidarity amongst

Member States:
— increasing security of supply,
— ensuring the competitiveness of European economies and the availability of affordable energy,
— promoting environmental sustainability and combating climate change.’

As a milestone in the creation of this Energy Policy for Europe, the European Council supported a comprehensive
Energy Action Plan for the period 2007-2009 and invited in particular the Commission to submit the proposals
requested in the Action Plan as speedily as possible. One of these proposals relates to the review of the Community
guidelines on State aid for environmental protection.

The European Council made a firm independent commitment for the EU to achieve at least a 20 % reduction in
greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 compared to 1990. It also stressed the need to increase energy efficiency in the
EU so as to achieve the objective of saving 20 % of the EU’s energy consumption compared to projections for 2020,
and endorsed a binding target of a 20 % share of renewable energies in overall EU energy consumption by 2020 as
well as a 10 % binding minimum target to be achieved by all Member States for the share of biofuels in overall EU
transport petrol and diesel consumption by 2020.

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