New EU infrastructure Regulation phases out support for cross border oil and gas projects, drives joint planning of offshore wind energy

National Governments and the European Parliament reached a political agreement on the Trans-European Networks for Energy (TEN-E) Regulation signalling the end of EU money going to oil and gas infrastructure projects. The legislation will also drive the coordinated planning of offshore wind per sea basin.

The new TEN-E Regulation will gear EU funding at infrastructural Projects of Common Interest consistent with the delivery of climate neutrality – and thereby excluding oil and gas projects. Funding will be available until the end of 2027 when hydrogen is blended into the gas grids provided the infrastructure in question is then fully converted to hydrogen.

Cyprus and Malta will each be allowed to complete one connection to the Trans-European gas network which they are currently not linked to.

Going forward a European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change will issue an opinion on the list of Projects of Common Interest that System Operators put forward for EU funding.

The TEN-E Regulation will also drive the joint planning of offshore wind per sea basin. National Governments will plan on the basis of non-binding offshore wind objectives for 2030, 2040 and 2050 in line with their commitment to net zero emissions. This will happen in parallel with the ENTSO-E Ten Year Network Development Plans.

Crucially, cross border offshore wind projects will benefit from a single point of contact in Government which will help expedite permitting procedures.

The Council is expected to endorse this political agreement on 22 December and the European Parliament to give it final sign-off on 26 January.