updated: 21 Nov 2014



The EU RES Directive

In Dec 2008, the European Parliament adopted the Climate Change Package with an aim to achieve the EU climate targets by 2020: a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, a 20% improvement in energy efficiency, and a 20% share for renewables in the EU energy mix.

The renewable energy (RES) Directive lays down mandatory national targets to be achieved by EU-27 through promoting the use of renewable energy in the electricity, heating and cooling, and transport sectors in order to ensure that  renewable energy makes up at least 20% of the EU's total energy consumption by 2020. The agreement foresees also that renewable energy, such as biofuels, electricity and hydrogen produced from renewable sources, account for at least 10% of the EU's total fuel consumption in all forms of transport by 2020.

The EU Member States have to adopt, publish and notify to the Commission their National Action Plans. The plans must ensure that authorisation, certification and licensing procedures are simplified to remove barriers in the development of renewables market.

In terms of reaching the mandatory national targets, the RES Directive provides the flexibility to use support schemes and measures of cooperation between different EU-27 and with third countries in accordance with Articles 5-11 of the Directives.  It is for the very first time, that an EU piece of legislation makes a reference to the Energy Community Treaty and  envisages mutually benefitting cooperation between EU-27 and the Contracting Parties. In the Directive’s recital 37 it says – “If, by virtue of a decision taken under the Energy Community Treaty to that effect, the contracting parties to that treaty become bound by the relevant provisions of this Directive, the measures of co-operation between Member States foreseen in this Directive will be applicable to them.” In Article 9, the Directive additionally outlines joint co-operation projects between the Energy Community and the EU-27.


 Directive 2009/28/EC of 23 April 2009 on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources




In the Energy Community context

At the 5th Ministerial Council in Dec 2008, the European Commission informed the ministers about the recent agreement on the new renewable directive and the related investment opportunities in the Energy Community. In its conclusions, the 5th Ministerial Council welcomed the suggestion of the European Commission to launch a study  on the impact and modalities of a possible inclusion of this future directive in the Energy Community Treaty and to set up a Renewable Energy Task Force in 2009.


The Final Report of the Study and its key findings were presented to the PHLG in June 2010. According to the conclusions of the 17th PHLG, "the lack of adequate biomass data of the Contracting Parties represents factual hindrance for practical implementation of the new RES Directive and therefore prevents the Ministerial Council from adopting a binding decision on the implementation of Directive 2009/28/EC at this stage." Agaist this background, the PHLG decided to submit the Ministerial Council a Recommendation on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources. Further, the PHLG requested the Secretariat to launch a new study on biomass consumption based on surveys.


The 7th Ministerial Council  adopted a Recommendation in Sep 2010. The Recommendation identifies specific issues concerning the implementation of the RES Directive and sets relevant deadlines. It forms the  legal basis for the Contracting Parties to start working on the implementation of the relevant rules. 

 Recommendations No 2010/01/MC-EnC on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources




To pave the way for the adoption of the RES Directive 2009/28/EC, the following pages outline the work of the Renewable Energy Task Force, as well as, the findings of the two renewable energy studies. The last page throws light on the renewable energy implementation plans pursuant to the Article 20 of the Treaty.