Brussels, 22 October 2018. Reaping the benefits of gas – natural, decarbonised and renewable – to deliver on climate goals and build a truly sustainable energy system is possible with some key measures in the gas sector.
Eurogas welcomes the European Commission’s intention to prepare a gas package to address new opportunities and issues in relation to natural, decarbonised and renewable gas. To contribute to the Commission’s thinking on the matter, Eurogas and its members published a set of preliminary ideas and policy proposals for further discussion and elaboration together with stakeholders.
“Gas in its various shapes can make a real difference to addressing the challenges of the energy transition cost-effectively. A few key measures in the gas sector will complement and help implement the targets and objectives of the Clean Energy Package,” says Eurogas Secretary General Beate Raabe.
The Eurogas discussion paper clusters around the pillars of a gas package outlined by the Commission earlier this year: sector integration; renewable and decarbonised gas; and future gas market regulation.
Eurogas invites the Commission to develop a vision on ‘sector integration’, allowing an interlinked technology-open energy system that combines electricity, heat and transport, including the infrastructure in power, gas and district heating. A smart combination of the electricity, gas and heat systems can deliver early achievements, allow more renewables, lower costs and increase system resilience.
A binding EU target for renewable and decarbonised gases combined with a European blueprint for guarantees of origin as well as a European framework for support schemes can help scale up the production and economics of decarbonised and renewable gas. This is as an integral part of achieving the EU’s climate commitments, whilst reaching a higher share of renewable energy. The target should be based on the existing renewable energy target. It should also be time-limited with the objective of enabling renewable and decarbonised gases to reach technology maturity.
The Eurogas discussion paper also puts forward ideas on updating certain aspects of the current gas market framework. A smart and flexible gas offer will give choice and options for customers, who will benefit from innovative and more efficient ways of using gas. To this end, regulation should strike a balance with the room left to suppliers for the marketing of new products, and prices should not be regulated.
As new markets take shape, Eurogas also suggests maintaining the principles of a robust market, making proposals on the roles of market participants: suppliers and network operators. To create a level playing field and ensure long-term contestability, Eurogas would support the allocation of a higher share of capacity on a short-term basis across the EU under certain conditions that take the impact on the market and security of supply into account. Eurogas could also support time-limited, local commodity release programmes to resolve proven structural constraints to competition and liquidity.
Note to Editors: Eurogas is an association representing 44 companies and associations engaged in the wholesale, retail and distribution of gas in Europe. Eurogas provides data and information relevant to EU decision makers and opinion formers in making the right policy choices.
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