European Commission Unveils Energy Infrastructure Projects
The projects, known as Projects of Common Interest (PCIs), will enable the gradual build-up of the Energy Union by integrating the energy markets in Europe and diversifying the energy sources and transport routes. The PCIs will also help bring an end to the energy isolation of some member states and bring down carbon emissions.
PCIs benefit from accelerated permitting procedures and improved regulatory conditions and may be eligible for financial support from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). A budget of $5.7 billion has been allocated to trans-European energy infrastructure under the CEF through 2020, helping projects of common interest to get implemented faster and making them more attractive to investors.
“Modern and reliable energy infrastructure is essential to allow energy to flow freely across Europe,” said Arias Cañete, Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy. “Europe’s energy transformation will require investments worth billions in strategic infrastructure. This list of projects will help ensure that our funds serve our goal of securing clean and affordable energy for Europeans.”
The list includes 108 electricity, 77 gas, 7 oil, and 3 smart grids projects. For a project to be included in the list, it had to demonstrate significant benefits for at least two member states, contribute to market integration and further competition, enhance security of supply, and reduce CO2 emissions.
Since the adoption of the first PCI list in 2013, 13 projects have been completed or will be commissioned before the end of 2015. Some 62 projects are expected to be completed by the end of 2017.
The list of PCIs is updated every two years with the aim to integrate newly needed projects and remove obsolete ones.