European Union

Alands Vindkraft AB v. Energimyndigheten (European Court of Justice, Grand Chamber, 2014)

Jurisdiction: European Union

Principle law(s): 2020 Climate and Energy Package (contains Directive 2009/29/EC, Directive 2009/28/EC, Directive 2009/31/EC and Decision No. 406/2009/EC of the Parliament and the Council ; see below)

Side A: Ålands Vindkraft AB (Corporation)

Side B: Swedish Energy Agency (Government)

Core objectives:

Challenged Sweden's green energy certificate scheme under Directive 2009/28

A Finnish wind farm challenged defendant Swedish energy agency's refusal to grant a green electricity certificate. The agency refused on the grounds that only green electricity production installations located within the Swedish territory may be awarded the certificate. Plaintiff claimed that the territorial limitation of Sweden's energy certificate scheme under Directive 2009/28 was inconsistent with Article 34 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). The court upheld Sweden's national support scheme and found that it was compatible with TFEU Article 34 because the national quota promotes increased use of renewable energy sources in electricity production.
Case documents

Related laws and policies
  • This law implements European Union legislation
    2020 Climate and Energy Package (contains Directive 2009/29/EC, Directive 2009/28/EC, Directive 2009/31/EC and Decision No. 406/2009/EC of the Parliament and the Council ; see below)

    Passed in 2009 Legislative

    In 2007 EU leaders endorsed an integrated approach to climate and energy policy that aims to combat climate change and increase energy security while strengthening its competitiveness. In 2008 the European Commission proposed binding legislation to implement the 20-20-20 targets. This 'climate and energy package' became law in 2009. The core of the package comprises four pieces of complementary legislation. The 20-20-20 targets include: • Reduction of EU GHG emissions by at least 20% below 1990 levels by 2020 • 20% of EU energy consumption to come from renewable resources by 2020 • 20% reduction in primary energy use compared with projected levels, by improving energy efficiency The EU committed to increase its emissions reduction to 30% by 2020, on condition that other major emitting countries commit to do their fair share under a global climate agreement. Member States will limit GHG emissions between 2013 and 2020 according to a linear trajectory with binding annual targets. This will ensure a gradual move towards the 2020 targets in sectors where changes take time to implement, such as buildings, infrastructure and transportation. To increase the cost-effectiveness of policies and measures, Member States are allowed to deviate from the linear trajectory to a certain degree. The Renewable Energy Directive sets the following targets: • At least 10% share of renewables in final energy consumption in the transportation sector by 2020 • The biofuels and bio-liquids should contribute to a reduction of at least 35% of GHG emissions in order to be recognised. From 2017, their share in emissions savings should be increased to 50 % It further commissions an assessment of the inclusion of emissions and removals related to LULUCF - anticipated to follow up on any international agreement on forestry, deforestation and sustainability criteria. The Directive 2009/28/EC of 23 April 2009 in particular promotes the use of energy from renewable sources, amends and subsequently repeals Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC.

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