Parliament backs revision of trans-European energy guidelines

New funding guidelines for key energy projects and improved storage solutions will better match the EU's ambitious climate goals.

During the plenary session in April 2022, MEPs backed a deal reached with the Council on the revision of funding guidelines for cross-border, trans-European energy infrastructure projects to bring them into line with EU climate policy and to increase security of supply.

Ending EU support for natural gas and fossil fuel based infrastructures

The updated rules will phase out EU funding for natural gas projects and instead direct funding to hydrogen infrastructure and carbon capture and storage. They also set mandatory sustainability criteria. All new infrastructure projects must contribute to EU climate targets for 2030 and 2050, effectively ending EU support for fossil fuel based infrastructure.

MEPs secured funding for projects that repurpose existing natural gas infrastructure for hydrogen transport or storage during a transitional period. They also pushed for more offshore renewable energy projects and facilitating their integration into EU networks.

Read more on EU solutions to decarbonise the energy sector

Trans-European Networks for Energy (TEN-E)

The Trans-European Networks for Energy (TEN-E) aim to link the energy infrastructure of EU countries. It identifies projects of common interest where countries can work together to develop better-connected energy networks and provides funding for new energy infrastructure.

The policy is being reviewed to ensure it is in line with the climate neutrality objective of the European Green Deal.

Projects of common interest

  • Key cross border infrastructure projects linking energy systems of EU countries
  • Projects on this list can benefit from simplified permits and the right to apply for EU funding from the Connecting Europe Facility
  • The aim is to guarantee affordable, secure and sustainable energy for all and to achieve decarbonisation of the economy in line with the Paris agreement
  • The list of projects is reviewed by the European Commission every two years

EU support for so-called energy corridors or electricity, gas, oil, smart grids and carbon dioxide networks aims to connect more isolated regions, ensuring undisrupted delivery of electricity and gas to all parts of the EU. The aim is also to strengthen cross-border interconnections, help integrate renewable energy and increase local storage capacity.