EU Energy Market Policy: Local and Regional Experience and Policy Recommendations
The overall aim of this project is to support the Committee of the Regions (CoR) in the analysis of legislative reviews in the area of energy market with a focus on the most relevant provisions for cities and local and regional authorities (LRAs). This analysis is carried out by CE Delft, ICLEI and Ecologic Institute.
There are a number of challenges with the proper functioning of the EU energy markets: the markets are too fragmented, there is a high level of fuel import dependency, CO2 emissions are high and key parts of the infrastructure are outdated, with investment levels being inadequate. Also the retail market functions poorly and energy prices for end users are high. Therefore, in 2015, a Framework Strategy for a Resilient Energy Union with a Forward-Looking Climate Change Policy was launched to be one of the European Commission's top 10 priorities. LRAs deal in many ways with the range of subjects under the Energy Union strategic framework such as electricity market design, energy efficiency, energy performance of buildings and promotion of renewable energy sources (RES). They act inter alia as licensing authorities, owners of public buildings, energy utilities and RES or Combined-Heat-and-Power (CHP) installations, purchasers of services and energy, etc. They are responsible for a large part of the economic structures in their cities and are closest to citizens, energy consumers as well as initiators of local and regional sustainable energy projects and their needs and problems. Local governments play a significant role in influencing energy systems; the designers and financial supporters of these systems, however, mostly are national and international bodies. So, there is a need to take into account the specific conditions of the local and regional level in order not to create (additional) obstacles especially when it comes to the promotion of sustainable energy.
The project team firstly elaborates an overview of the key latest documents and principles of EU energy market policy, followed by a summary of main criticisms from key industrial, societal and expert organisations at the EU level, containing relevance for the local and regional level. Key aspects of EU energy market policy challenges and examples of how to cope with them are then illustrated by a representative sample of regional and local case studies. Lastly, the project team provides conclusions on local and regional experience in the implementation of the energy market acquis up to the present date and policy recommendations with regards to the consideration of the role of LRAs.
The report is available for download.