EC to Sanction Bulgaria over Renewable Energy

EC to Sanction Bulgaria over Renewable Energy

The European Commission has started an infringement procedure against Bulgaria over the delay in the Renewable Energy Sources (RES) Act.

The news was reported Saturday by the Bulgarian daily "Dnevnik," citing the press office of the EU Energy Commissioner, Günther Oettinger.

Every EU Member State had a December 5, 2010, deadline to introduce in its national legislation the requirements of the EU directive for encouraging green energy. The Bulgarian cabinet postponed twice voting on the directive and finally sent it to the Parliament last week.

"The Bulgarian authorities had not sent any information," Oettinger's office said, adding there are another two Member States which are late.

Brussels has already sent a notification letter asking the Bulgarian government to comply with the directive as a first step in the infringement procedure, which could end with a court trial against Bulgaria.

The Bulgarian Economy and Energy Ministry is yet to comment on the issue.

Investors in green energy in Bulgaria and power utilities say they expect the Act to instate some order in the sector by capping electric power purchase prices and by introducing clear rules of connecting green energy plants to the national electric network.

By 2020, as an EU member, Bulgaria is mandated to fulfill 16% of its energy needs from RES.

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