It will influence negotiations with Member States over the EU budget for the 2014-2020 period.
The main criticism expressed by Energy Cities on the REGI Report by rapporteur Olbrycht has been taken into account: the Structural Funds will NOT support the construction and modernisation of transmission and distribution networks for fossil fuels. This is a positive signal and will allow funding to be directed at demand management and decentralised renewables resources.
Regarding sustainable urban mobility, the paragraph by the REGI rapporteur has been adopted. Energy Cities is very much in favour of this thematic priority with which we can expect ’’friendly and low-carbon transport system and sustainable urban mobility’’ to receive stronger financial support from cohesion funds. Indeed, remote areas or less developed urban areas should get a chance to be better connected to core markets. However, as mentioned last week’s blog, Energy Cities suggests co-financing only the climate-related dimension of transport projects, in line with the 3x20 energy and climate objectives.
In the final version of the report, climate earmarking for the ERDF budget has been raised respectively to 22% for developed and transition regions and 12% for less developed regions. This represents €25.4 billion - an increase of €8.3 billion compared to the initial proposal by the Commission proposal and almost 3 times more than today.
As a strong promoter of the Covenant of Mayors, Energy Cities knows very well the concrete difficulties that committed local authorities are encountering. Co-financing of actions set in their Sustainable Energy Action Plan would not only recognize the efforts of over 4,000 signatories and their stakeholders, but would also accelerate a European-wide boost of social, economic and environmental priorities.
To conclude, we note with satisfaction that in the common provisions, the partnership principle is largely improved, and climate assessment is required for all programmes.
The draft report