Commission approves amendments to German renewable energy law EEG 2014

The European Commission has found amendments proposed by Germany to the Renewable Energy Act (EEG 2014) to be in line with EU state aid rules, in particular the 2014 Energy and Environmental Aid guidelines. The EEG 2014, which was initially approved by the Commission under EU state aid rules in July 2014, provides support for the production of electricity from renewable energy sources and from mining gas. It also reduces the financial burden on certain energy-intensive users by lowering their level of payment of the EEG-surcharge, a levy financing the renewable energy support. The proposed amendments also allow individual companies active in two sectors, namely forging as well as treatment and coating of metals, to benefit from reduced levels of the EEG-surcharge, provided these companies can demonstrate that, on an individual basis, their electricity costs are at least 20% of their gross value added. Based on information submitted by Germany, the Commission has concluded that the sectors are particularly exposed to international competition, and therefore individual energy-intensive companies active in these sectors are eligible to also benefit from the reductions to the EEG-surcharge.

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