Parliament receives U-communication on Commission proposal to amend laws on renewable energy

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment
Publication date 23.9.2021 14.13
Press release
Kuvassa käsi ja uusiutuvan energian symboleita

On 23 September 2021, the Government submitted a U-communication to Parliament on legislative proposals to tighten the EU’s renewable energy targets. In July, the European Commission published its proposals to amend the Directive on the promotion of energy from renewable sources (RED II), the Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union and the Fuel Quality Directive. The proposals are part of the broader package of measures called Fit for 55.

The proposal aims to bring the RED II Directive in line with the EU’s new emission reduction target of 55% by 2030. Renewable energy plays a significant role in meeting the emissions targets and the measures outlined in the Directive in their current form are not, according to the Commission’s assessment, sufficient to achieve this overall objective. 

The proposed changes will also take into account new EU strategies on marine energy, sector integration, hydrogen and biodiversity. The proposal aims to have positive effects on employment and economic growth.

According to the proposal, the EU’s common renewable energy target will be raised from 32% to 40%, which would require new measures from the Member States to increase the use of renewable energy. According to the impact assessment, Finland’s target for the share of renewable energy would rise to 57%. 

The Member States would continue to set their national climate and energy objectives under the Governance Regulation. The Member States’ obligation to report on this progress in 2023, as included in the original Directive, would be eliminated.

In addition to raising the renewable energy target, the key proposals concern the use and sustainability criteria of forest biomass as well as the heating and transport sectors.

The original RED II Directive was issued in December 2018 with expected implementation by 1 July 2021. The Directive lays down provisions on support schemes for electricity, rights and treatment of consumers of self-generated renewable electricity, permit-granting procedures for producers of renewable energy, mainstreaming the use of renewable energy in heating and cooling, guarantees of origin, use of biofuels and other renewable energy in transport, and sustainability of biofuels, bioliquids and solid biomass. 

Union communications are prepared on those matters to be decided by the EU which, due to their content, would fall within the competence of Parliament if Finland was not a member of the EU. A communication describes the essential content of the EU’s proposal and the Government’s position on the matter. 

Pekka Grönlund, Deputy Director General, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 506 4815