Energy & Environment


March 2016

Public Consultation – market-based measures to reduce climate impact of aviation
The European Commission has recently launched a consultation on market-based measures to reduce the climate impact of international aviation. They are hoping to collect experiences, suggestions and opinions related to international and EU policies tackling climate change impacts from international aviation emissions through market-based measures. A number of policy options are currently being developed at the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and in relation to the EU emissions trading system (EU ETS) and the Commission is particularly keen to hear views on these. The deadline for submitting responses is 30 May 2016. 

Public Consultation – Chemicals Legislation 
The European Commission has launched a public consultation on the regulatory ‘fitness’ of EU chemicals legislation, excluding REACH. They would like to hear from all those involved in the industry, those responsible for enforcement as well as consumer groups and academia about how they feel the chemicals legislative framework is functioning. The deadline for responses is 27 May 2016. 

February 2016

EU Gas Security of Supply
The European Commission has recently put forward new rules which it hopes would prevent a gas supply crisis in the future. In a proposal for a Regulation on measures to safeguard the security of gas supply, the Commission proposes obliging EU countries to help out a neighbouring EU country if they are experiencing gas supply trouble (solidarity principle), gas supply security rules shifting from a national approach to a regional approach where countries will work together to identify common gas supply risks and countries preparing risk assessments, preventive action plans and emergency plans at regional level. 

EU Heating and Cooling Strategy
The European Commission has recently published its first Heating and Cooling strategy which aims to address the amount of energy being used to heat and cool buildings in the EU.  According to Commission figures, heating and cooling accounts for half of the EU’s annual overall energy consumption and 68% of all its gas imports. In its strategy, the Commission proposes a number of measures to reduce this consumption including plans to develop energy efficiency guidelines for public schools and hospitals and improving the reliability of energy performance certificates for buildings. It also states that up-coming reviews of both the renewable energy directive and the energy performance of buildings directive will provide an opportunity raise the levels of renewable energy being used in the heating and cooling of buildings.

Share of renewable in 2014
Figures recently launch show that in 2014, 16% of the gross final consumption of energy in the EU came from renewable sources. The EU’s headline target for the share of renewables in energy consumption is 20% by 2020. 

Consultation – sustainable bioenergy
The European Commission has launched a consultation on an EU policy for sustainable bioenergy from 2020 to 2030. Views from stakeholders will feed into the review of the sustainability of bioenergy sources currently being undertaken. The deadline for submitting responses is 10 May 2016.

Experts Sought - Nutrient recycling and Sustainable mobilisation of forest biomass
The European Innovation Partnership on Sustainable Agriculture (EIP Agri) is looking for experts for two new focus groups they are looking to establish. EIP Agri Focus Groups bring together 20 experts, including farmers or foresters, advisers, researchers and agri-business representatives, to collect and summarise knowledge on best practices in a specific field, listing problems as well as opportunities.
Two new focus groups are to be set up around the themes of Nutrient recycling and Sustainable mobilisation of forest biomass and a call for experts is currently open. The deadline for expressions of interest is 21 March.

LIFE Programme – 2016 indicative timetable
An indicative timetable for the launch of the 2016 LIFE calls has been published. It is anticipated that the calls will be published on 19 May. The deadlines for traditional projects are anticipated to be:

  • Climate Action – 7 September
  • Environment and Resource Efficiency – 12 September
  • Nature & biodiversity and Information & Governance – 15 September

Fuel Cell and Hydrogen - Webinar
The 2016 Call for Proposals for Fuel Cell and Hydrogen proposals was launched on 19th January 2016 and has a deadline of 3rd May 2016. The UK National Contact Point for energy in the EU’s horizon 2020 programme (EU Energy Focus) is holding a webinar on the call on 24 February. The webinar will be recorded and available to listen to after the event.

Green Week 2016 
This year’s Green Week will take place from 30 May to 3 June, focusing on the theme "Investing for a greener future".

Join an EU ‘Circular Economy’ Delegation to Chile
The European Commission is organising a delegation to Santiago de Chile on 25-26 April 2016 to promote the circular economy and green business opportunities. They are keen to hear from SMEs or business representatives whose activities are linked to the circular economy that would interested in joining the delegation. Anyone interested in participating should register by Friday 25 March 2016.    

Mercury Legislation Changes

The European Commission recently put forward changes to existing EU legislation on mercury, pathing the way for the ratification of the Minamata Covention on Mercury. The changes proposed by the Commission include a ban of any new use of mercury in products and industry in the EU, unless the use is needed for the protection of health and the environment. 

Bioeconomy Stakeholder Conference
The next EU Bioeconomy Stakeholder Conference will take place in Utrecht, Netherlands on 12-13 April. The event will showcase Dutch bioeconomy innovations and give stakeholders the opportunity to tell the EU what they believe is needed to advance the bioeconomy in Europe.