EU, UK win fossil fuel ‘carve-out’ in Energy Charter Treaty deal

(EurActiv, 28 Jun 2022) Investments in new fossil fuel projects will no longer enjoy legal protection on EU and UK territories under a deal reached on Friday (24 June) to reform the 1994 Energy Charter Treaty.

Environmental groups and some EU countries like Spain have decried the Energy Charter Treaty for violating the goals of the Paris Agreement by offering legal protection to climate-wrecking fossil fuel investments.

That was acknowledged by the European Commission, which called the ECT “outdated” and started negotiating a reform of the treaty on behalf of the 27 EU member states four years ago.

In 2019, member states asserted the EU’s “right to regulate” as part of the ECT reform talks and called on the modernised treaty to reflect the bloc’s climate and clean energy goals.

Those objectives were partly met in the deal announced on Friday.

“The carve-out means that there shouldn’t be fossil fuel investment protection within the EU based on the Energy Charter,” said an official briefing the press about the deal on Thursday.

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EurActiv, 28 Jun 2022: EU, UK win fossil fuel ‘carve-out’ in Energy Charter Treaty deal