Secretariat requests decisions by the Ministerial Council for breaches of the Energy Community’s environmental rules in five Contracting Parties

14 July 2023

Yesterday, the Secretariat referred a number of infringement cases under the Treaty’s dispute settlement procedures to the Ministerial Council for decision-making at its next meeting in December 2023.

Four of these cases address non-compliance with the Large Combustion Plants Directive (2001/80/EC), which aims to reduce emissions of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and dust from power plants using fossil fuels. Air pollution seriously affects human lives and health and is at critical levels in many Contracting Parties. Coal power plants are among the top sources of air pollution.

The case against Montenegro (ECS-15/21) addresses the continued operation of the coal power plant Pljevlja after the expiry, in 2020, of the 20,000 hours for which it was opted out under the Large Combustion Plants Directive 2001/80/EC. The necessary refurbishments to bring the plant in line with the stricter emission standards of the Industrial Emissions Directive (2010/75/EC) have not yet been implemented.

Three cases concern the lack of implementation of the emission ceilings for domestic coal power plants as established under the National Emission Reduction Plans (NERPs) by North Macedonia (Case ECS-7/21), Kosovo* (Case ECS-8/21) and Bosnia and Herzegovina (Case ECS-9/21). The adoption and implementation of NERPs is an alternative option to ensure compliance with the Large Combustion Plants Directive.

Three more cases concern the lack of transposition into national legislation of the Environmental Liability Directive (2004/35/EC) by Bosnia Herzegovina (Case ECS-10/23), Kosovo* (Case ECS-11/23) and Moldova (Case ECS-12/23). The transposition deadline under the Energy Community Treaty had expired on 1 January 2021.

All requests for information should be addressed to the Legal Counsel at [email protected] or +43 1 535 2222 24 and should make reference to the relevant case numbers.

In Scope:

  • Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Kosovo Kosovo
  • Moldova Moldova
  • Montenegro Montenegro
  • North Macedonia North Macedonia