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Renewable Energy: EC Action

Volume 489: debated on Friday 20 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions his Department has had with the European Commission on powers to set sustainability requirements additional to the Renewable Energy Directive. (263595)

The UK Government participated in European negotiations on the Renewable Energy Directive that resulted in the inclusion of sustainability requirements relating to direct environmental impacts, and will continue to work with the European Commission, as proposals to account for indirect environmental impacts are being considered.

Member states will not be permitted to impose sustainability requirements additional to those in the Renewable Energy Directive. A provision in the directive (expected to be article 18(8) in the final published version of the directive) prohibits member states from refusing to take into account biofuels which meet the directive’s sustainability requirements, on other grounds of sustainability.