PCI Workshop - Understanding Projects of Common Interest

The “Guidelines for Trans-European Energy Infrastructure”, that came into force in May this year, are a great opportunity for further improved transparency and participation in the electricity grid planning processes. Successful implementation of the new legislation will require all actors to: fully understand the PCI processes and their interactions; develop their own role and relationships with other stakeholders; and engage in and contribute to these processes in the best possible way.

Offshore workshop - stakeholders' perspectives on offshore grids and the marine environment

In March, the European Parliament and Council have adopted the ‘Regulation on Guidelines for Trans-European Energy Infrastructure’. This legislation is another step towards the European objective of an internal energy market which will support the integration of renewable energies and promote the interconnection of energy networks. Integral part of the legislation is the identification of ‘Projects of Common Interest’ (PCIs) which will be subject to a European permitting regime and eligible for European funding. Many of the projects that are proposed for the first list of PCIs are subsea cables. The implementation of these projects will thus be another building block towards an expansion of offshore grid infrastructure in Europe, and towards improved international cooperation to achieve this.

Cable Workshop - Understanding Underground Cables

The impact of overhead power lines is a key trigger for public opposition against grid extension projects. Often local pressure groups demand that a new line shall be put underground. Expectations into undergrounding are high while actual experience is comparatively low. In Europe, first projects include some kilometres of highest voltage underground cables, but the integration of innovative cable solutions into an aging power grid remains a challenge. As a consequence a lot of questions remain highly debated.

2nd European Grid Conference

In December 2012 the Renewables Grid Initiative (RGI) and the Smart Energy for Europe Platform (SEFEP) invited you to be our guest at the 2nd European Grid Conference "Beyond Public Opposition". During the Conference, the European Grid Report and the second part of the European Grid Declaration on Transparency and Public Participation were launched.

 

Implementing the European Grid Declaration - How can grids protect and enhance the environment?

In order for Europe to meet its targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and successfully make the transition to a low carbon economy, large quantities of variable renewable energy sources will need to be integrated into the European electricity transmission network and transported across Europe to areas of demand. This will require both grid modernisation and expansion. Our challenge is to understand how this can be achieved while minimising the negative impacts on our natural environment, and where possible, delivering environmental improvements.

The Need for Grids

With the adoption of its 20-20-20 targets and the objective of a largely decarbonised power sector by 2050, the European Union has set the stage for a significant increase in the use of renewable energies. A modernisation of the energy grid is a key requirement in this context and acknowledged not only by TSOs and many major NGOs but also by some citizens that are directly affected by grid expansion projects.