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Britain tried to block European Union energy efficiency rules

Politico 18th July 2017, Negotiations over Britain’s exit from the EU got underway in earnest this
week, but that doesn’t mean that the U.K. is withdrawing from other EU
business. Far from it. It has emerged that British ministers and officials
lobbied hard against a European Commission plan on energy efficiency, even
though the rules might never apply to the U.K.

Assuming it leaves the EU as planned in March 2019. Britain opposed a compromise deal on future EU
energy efficiency rules during a long and difficult meeting of EU energy
ministers last month, pushing the Commission to water down its proposals.

Richard Harrington, a junior minister at the U.K.’s Department for
Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, told the Energy Council meeting
in June that the U.K. was “disappointed” with Brussels’ proposal to
boost the target to 30 percent.

He said the British government “cannot support” the proposed compromise on energy efficiency because “we do
not believe it strikes the right balance to provide sufficient flexibility to reach our ambitions.”

The energy efficiency rules are part of a wider package of proposals meant to accelerate the EU’s transition to clean
energy, and while the European Commission is pushing for an inter-institutional deal on all eight parts of the package by the end of 2018, officials doubt that is realistic.

The move to block strong energy efficiency rules is creating “a lot of bad feelings” among other EU
countries, especially since Britain “will need all the friends it can
get” after Brexit, said Jonathan Gaventa, director at think tank E3G.


July 22, 2017 - Posted by | ENERGY, politics international, UK

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