On 24 and 25 May 2018, the EC hosted the 4th Energy Infrastructure Forum in Copenhagen, Denmark, gathering the representatives of EU Institutions, EU Member States, network operators and industry stakeholders. The Forum was set up in 2015 as part of the Energy Union strategy. Its purpose is to help remove technical and regulatory barriers to energy flowing freely across the EU and to discuss major issues relating to infrastructure and EU energy policy.
The two-day event was organised to discuss the challenges of developing Europe’s energy infrastructure and was divided into five sessions, namely: (i) interlinking gas and electricity infrastructure development; (ii) improving the implementation of cross-border cost allocation; (iii) monitoring the implementation of PCIs; (iv) innovation and security of supply; and (v) public engagement.
In its conclusions, the Forum acknowledged the need for planning the future gas and electricity infrastructure in an interlinked approach, in order to contribute to the overarching goal of decarbonising the European system. In this spirit, the Forum requested the ENTSOs to “consult the outcomes of their focus study with ACER, DSO organisations and stakeholders before submitting the interlinked model to the EC for approval, by the end January 2019”.
Likewise, the Forum recognised that “market integration, security of supply and integration of RES are the main drivers of infrastructure development”. The Forum agreed that “the national regulatory frameworks and/or their practical implementation should enable the necessary and efficient investments in innovation and new technologies and/or security of supply”. It was also agreed that “when CBCA is implemented it is important to ensure a fair representation of benefits and costs”.
Finally, the Forum recognised the need for “mainstreaming stakeholder engagement activities carried out by TSOs with a view to increasing public awareness, trust and acceptance of energy infrastructure projects” and encouraged stakeholders to find practical and innovative solutions for scaling up best practices.