Billions to be spent improving Europe's energy structure

Billions of euros are to be spent bringing Europe's energy infrastructure together and increase the market for renewable energy across the continent.

However, a pro-renewables group has warned it was 'not clear' how the funding will be divided between electricity, gas, oil and carbon capture and storage (CCS) schemes.

The European Commission (EC) will put €9.1bn into trans-European energy infrastructure, aimed at bringing power sources from around the continent together.

Overall, the EC has estimated it needs investment €200m in Europe's energy structure

And, it hopes this cash will act as 'leverage' to get more funding from other private and public investors.

The commission also claims both people and business will benefit from cheaper energy in the future as a result of the investment.

A spokesman said: "Funding would encourage more connections between EU countries, making it easier to transfer both traditional forms of energy and renewables.

"A better trans-European infrastructure would lead to more secure supplies at affordable prices, while helping the EU reach its climate change objectives."

European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) chief executive officer, Christian Kjaer, welcomed the funding, but warned it would be still not clear how this money will be divided between electricity, gas, oil and carbon capture and storage (CCS) infrastructure.

He said: "Although it represents only a small proportion of what is thought to be needed for energy infrastructure improvements, it should, together with the proposal for project bonds, leverage significant additional private investments."

Luke Walsh


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