Terje Aasland, The Renewable Energy Directive | Norway has responded to the EU’s “threat letter”

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The EU’s energy commissioner Kadri Simson has announced that the EU will be tougher in its grip on Norway

In March, she wrote a sensational letter to the Norwegian government, in which she expressed her expectation that the renewable energy directive will be included in the EEA agreement by 13 August this year. If that doesn’t happen, Simson threatened that there could be punitive measures.

At the same time, Norway and the EFTA countries were given until 13 May to respond to the European Commission on how the renewables directive should be introduced.

Energy Minister Terje Aasland (Ap) states that he replied to the energy commissioner’s letter on Friday.

– In the letter to the energy commissioner, I have announced that we have stepped up the review of the directive and are working together with our EEA/EFTA partners to create a draft EEA decision, he writes in an SMS to the Nation.

– Cooperation at European level on the development of renewable energy takes place to a large extent through processes under the Renewable Energy Directive. The Renewable Energy Directive is therefore important for the development of renewable energy in the internal energy market of which Norway is a part.

– We take our time

The Energy Minister does not elaborate specifically on whether Norway will comply with the EU’s deadline.

– At the same time, I am concerned that we take the time to make thorough assessments of the content and consequences of the regulations for Norway before the directive is incorporated into the EEA, including the need for any adaptations.

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Aasland says he has emphasized to the EU that Norway wants to continue energy cooperation, both through the EEA agreement and the energy policy dialogue.

– In the letter I wrote that Norway has the highest share of renewable electricity production in Europe and has a total renewable share, as calculated in the directive, of well over 70 per cent. It has been important to clarify that the development of renewable energy in Norway takes place on the basis of good resource management. Public participation in decision-making processes and environmental impact analyzes is of utmost importance in all new projects.

Sp has said no

The renewables directive is part of the EU’s fourth energy market package, which the Center Party has put its foot down for.

On Thursday, party leader and finance minister Trygve Slagsvold Vedum (Sp) stressed to the Nation that it is not relevant for the party to process and introduce the energy package piece by piece.

– It is the entirety of the EU’s fourth energy market package that we are so against. That is where the party stands, and the whole point is that we should not give up more control over energy policy, said Vedum.

Facts about the EU’s fourth energy package

* Was adopted in the EU in 2018 and 2019. Also called the Clean Energy Package.

* Consists of eight different legal acts, including:

– A renewables directive which enshrines in law that at least 32 per cent of the energy mix must be renewable by 2030.

– An energy efficiency directive with a target of at least 32.5 per cent energy savings by 2030.

– A directive for energy saving in buildings.

– A revised regulation for the energy agency Acer (Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators), which gets a greater role and more authority.

* It took a full ten years before the EU’s third energy package was incorporated into the EEA regulations. It became part of Norwegian law in 2019.

Source: NTB

The Renewable Energy Directive was adopted in the EU in 2018, and is one of several laws that Norway is lagging behind in introducing.

According to the EEA agreement, Norway is obliged to incorporate new EU regulations as quickly as possible. If this does not happen, the EU can refer to Article 102 of the EEA Agreement and put all or parts of the policy area out of force.

However, Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre (Ap) has stated that he does not fear punishment from the EU if Norway does not meet the deadline set by the EU.

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The article is in Norwegian

Tags: Terje Aasland Renewable Energy Directive Norway responded EUs threat letter

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