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News article25 July 2023Representation in Ireland

European Green Deal: Energy Efficiency Directive, FuelEU Maritime Regulation and Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation adopted

The European Commission has welcomed the final approval by the Council of the EU of the revised Energy Efficiency Directive, FuelEU Maritime Regulation and the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR).

Visual with three small images showing an air conditioning unit, men installing solar panels and an image of energy labels with text: The Energy Efficiency Directive

The European Commission has welcomed the final approval of the revised Energy Efficiency Directive, FuelEU Maritime Regulation,Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR), as part of the ‘Fit for 55' package of legislation to reduce EU greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030. This legislation was presented by the Commission in July 2021 to deliver the European Green Deal.

With its increased ambition, the revised law on Energy Efficiency will reduce energy use this decade and beyond, and put the EU on a cost-efficient pathway to become climate-neutral by 2050. The proposed targets were revised upwards by the Commission after Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and it will now also support the EU's efforts to end Russian fossil fuel imports, as set out in the REPowerEU Plan.

Under the revised legislation, the EU will have to reduce final energy consumption by 11.7% by 2030, compared to 2020. The European Parliament and Member States agreed to almost double the annual energy savings obligation at national level. This will drive energy savings in critical sectors such as buildings, industry and transport. The updated Directive also puts a stronger focus on alleviating energy poverty and empowering consumers.

Regarding maritime greenhouse gas emissions, the new FuelEU Maritime regulation will ensure that the greenhouse gas intensity of fuels used by the shipping sector gradually decreases over time, by 2% in 2025 to as much as 80% by 2050. For that purpose, the regulation incentivises the uptake of so-called renewable fuels of non-biological origin (RFNBO), that have a high decarbonisation potential, and excludes fossil fuels from the regulation's certification process.

Finally, the EU will deploy more recharging and refuelling stations for alternative fuels in the coming years enabling the transport sector to significantly reduce its carbon footprint following today's adoption the Regulation on Alternative Fuel Infrastructure. Under this regulation, from 2025 onwards, fast recharging stations for cars, vans and heavy-duty vehicles will need to be installed every 60 km along the EU's main transport corridors.

Following the formal approval of both co-legislators, these new legislations can now enter into force the twentieth day upon publication in the EU's official journal. More information on the adoption of the Energy Efficiency Directive is available here.

Details

Publication date
25 July 2023
Author
Representation in Ireland