EC to asses national plans for alternative energy in transport in November
The EU Members States will have to develop market and infrastructure for alternative fuels in transport and to this end they are preparing national policy frameworks. The European Commission (EC) will publish its assessment of those frameworks in November, the EC told Balkan Green Energy News.
In line with the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive, the Member States have to submit their national policy frameworks to outline national objectives, and supporting actions for the development of the alternative fuels market, including the deployment of the necessary infrastructure.
Among other things, the Directive requires Member States to set targets for recharging points for electric vehicles to be built by 2020. They were recommended to foresee ideally a minimum of one recharging point per ten electric vehicles. The targets are to be set also for other fuels like liquefied natural gas (LNG), compressed natural gas (CNG), and hydrogen.
Last year, the Croatian Parliament adopted the Law on the establishment of alternative fuels infrastructure.
Transport in the EU still heavily depends on oil, although the share of renewable energy in the sector has risen from 1.4 percent in 2004 to 6.7 percent in 2015, according to the European statistical office Eurostat.
The European Commission presented last year the European Strategy for low-emission mobility, looking for the ways to accelerate the use of low-emission alternative energy, such as advanced biofuels, electricity, hydrogen and renewable synthetic fuels by providing strong incentives to innovate.
The EC said that with adequate policy measure the share of low-emission energy in the transport could increase to about 15-17 percent in 2030.
To this end, the Member states can use existing mechanisms and funds, including the Investment Plan for Europe. Also, under the European Structural and Investment Fund EUR 39 billion are available for supporting the move towards low-emission mobility, of which EUR 12 billion for low-carbon and sustainable urban mobility alone. Under the research program Horizon2020, EUR 6.4 billion is available for low-carbon mobility projects.
Czech Republic introduces EUR 45 million support scheme
The Czech Republic has decided to support setting up of refueling and recharging stations for low emission vehicles with a EUR 45 million scheme. The European Commission has found the Czech plans to be in line with EU state aid rules. It has concluded that the measure contributes to reducing CO2 emissions without unduly distorting competition in the Single Market.
“The Czech scheme is yet another good example of how Member States can contribute to the fight against global warming. The scheme will promote alternative fuels and reduce harmful car emissions, and will encourage consumers and businesses to use greener transportation, without distorting competition “, Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said.
The scheme provides support of EUR 44.5 million over six years for the construction of publicly accessible recharging and refueling stations for vehicles running on alternative. The infrastructure network will cover the entire country.
Companies already active in the alternative fuels sector can apply for this support, which will be awarded in four separate calls for tender, through an open and transparent procedure, the European Commission said.
The EU laws allow Member States to support the development of certain economic activities – in this case improving energy efficiency and reducing CO2 emissions.