European Commission adopts environmental and energy State aid guidelines for 2014–2020

Yesterday, 9 April 2014, the European Commission adopted its new Guidelines on environmental and energy State aid for 2014–2020.

The adoption followed intense stakeholder consultation and – unusually – even led the Commissioners to a vote, in which one commissioner voted against and three abstained. The new Guidelines replace the Commission’s 2008 Guidelines on State aid for environmental protection, but now also include detailed rules regarding State aid in the energy sector. They are part of the Commission’s State Aid Modernisation initiative, launched in 2012, in which it proposed to rewrite many of the existing State aid rules and guidelines.

The objective is to enhance the Commission’s State aid powers to foster sustainable, smart and inclusive growth in a competitive internal market in line with the Europe 2020 strategy, and to allow the Commission to focus its enforcement on the cases with the biggest impact on the internal market.

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