State aid: Commission approves Belgian certificates schemes for renewable electricity and high-efficiency cogeneration in Flanders
The European Commission has concluded the certificates schemes for renewable electricity and high-efficiency cogeneration implemented in Flanders (Belgium) to be in line with EU State aid rules. The two schemes contribute to reaching EU energy and climate goals whilst preserving competition.
In October 2017, Belgium notified two measures to support the development of renewable electricity and high-efficiency cogeneration in the region of Flanders:
- Under the green certificates scheme, renewable electricity producers receive one green certificate for each MWh they generate.
- Under the combined heat and power (CHP) certificates scheme, high-efficiency cogeneration installations receive one certificate for each MWh of energy saving they realise.
Renewable electricity producers and high-efficiency cogeneration installations can then sell their certificates on the market and thereby obtain additional revenues on top of the electricity market price.
The Commission assessed the compatibility of the two schemes under EU State aid rules, in particular the provisions of the 2014 Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection and Energy. It concluded that the two certificates schemes will support the production of electricity from renewable energy sources and high-efficiency cogeneration, in line with EU environmental objectives, while any distortion of competition caused by the public support is minimised. The two schemes will help Belgium to meet its 2020 target of producing 13% of its energy needs from renewable sources.
The Commission's 2014 Guidelines on State Aid for Environmental Protection and Energy allow Member States to support renewable energy sources, subject to certain conditions. The Guidelines aim to enabling Europe to meet its ambitious energy and climate targets whilst minimising distortions of competition in the Single Market and costs for taxpayers.
The non-confidential version of the decision will be made available under the case number SA.46013 in the State aid register on the DG Competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved. The State Aid Weekly e-News lists new publications of State aid decisions on the internet and in the EU Official Journal.