RIGA - The European Parliament on Tuesday approved including REPowerEU measures in national plans to make member states more independent from Russian fossil fuels, speed up the green transition and tackle energy poverty, European Parliament spokesman Janis Krastins told LETA.
He informed that MEPs confirmed with 535 votes to 63 and 53 abstentions a deal reached with the Council of the EU in December 2022. Under the agreement, member states applying to receive additional funds through an amended recovery and resilience plan will be required to include measures to save energy, produce clean energy and diversify energy supplies, as foreseen in the EU’s REPowerEU plan.
The new rules will cover measures retroactively from February 1, 2022, with some limited exceptions. MEPs made sure that these measures are designed to support investments to tackle energy poverty for vulnerable households, SMEs and micro-enterprises, Krastins said.
MEPs convinced EU countries to allocate at least 30 percent of their spending under REPowerEU to multi-country measures, addressing existing bottlenecks in energy transmission, distribution and storage as well as increasing cross-border flows, even if carried out by one EU country.
MEPs also agreed on introducing new transparency rules concerning the 100 final recipients who receive the highest amount of funding. These rules will apply to the entirety of the recovery and resilience plans.
The “do no significant harm” principle should apply to the REPowerEU chapters, with temporary exemptions granted to measures that safeguard the EU’s immediate energy security concerns, minimize the potential environmental harm and do not jeopardise EU climate targets.
Parliament negotiators ensured that from the additional EUR 20 billion in grants proposed by the European Commission, EUR 8 billion will come from an earlier auctioning of national emission allowances under the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS), while EUR 12 billion will be taken from the Innovation Fund. In addition, no revenue raised through the ETS can be used for investments in fossil fuel.
The Recovery and Resilience Facility is an extraordinary and one-time measure, in place until August 31, 2026. The new rules concerning REPowerEU measures in national recovery plans enter into force on the day following its publication in the Official Journal of the EU.