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Dáil Question to Dept of Communications on outstanding EU Directives

To ask the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources the number of EU directives related to his Department that have yet to be transposed into Irish law despite the deadline date been passed; when is it proposed that these Directives will be transposed; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

– Anthony Lawlor.

* For WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 11th December, 2013.

Ref No: 53348/13

REPLY

There are three infringement cases in my Department concerning transposition of EU Directives.

Transposition of the Third Energy Package, designed to facilitate completion of the internal market in electricity and gas, is a complex process. The European Commission has issued two Reasoned Opinions to Ireland in regard to its transposition of certain electricity related aspects of the package. The Commission stated that it wishes in the additional Reasoned Opinion, which issued in late April 2013, to complement the June 2012 Reasoned Opinion, with, inter alia, clarification of its views with regard to the transposition of the unbundling provisions in the Electricity Directive. My Department, following careful evaluation of the Commission’s opinion, replied in September 2013 and will continue to liaise with the Commission on how full compliance is being implemented in Ireland.

The second case relates to a Reasoned Opinion issued on Directive 2009/28/EC on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources and amending and subsequently repealing Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC. A response to the Reasoned Opinion is currently being prepared and will issue in the coming weeks. The reply will set out: those articles whose transposition has been notified to the Commission since the Reasoned Opinion; those articles that require legislative amendment; and those articles that my Department considers to have been transposed through a combination of legislation and administrative procedures. Initial draft legislation is being progressed.

The third case relates to Directive 2009/31/EC on the geological storage of carbon dioxide and amending Council Directive 85/337/EEC, European Parliament and Council Directives 2000/60/EC, 2001/80/EC, 2004/35/EC, 2006/12/EC, 2008/1/EC and Regulation (EC) No 1013/2006. My Department transposed this in November 2011 exercising a provision under Article 4 of the Directive, not to allow geological storage of CO2 for a period of 5 years as it was considered appropriate to await technological progress and work internationally. The Commission issued a Reasoned Opinion on 20 November 2013 as they do not consider this approach, which has been adopted by a number of countries, to constitute full transposition and consider that the Directive has only been partially transposed. My Department is now examining options to finalise transposition of the two articles (12 & 21) that are mentioned in the Reasoned Opinion. My Department will liaise with the Attorney General’s Office and the Commission to ensure that a literal translation of the relevant Directive text into an EC Regulation made under the 1972 Act will satisfactorily transpose the Directive. My Department is looking at early 2014 to notify the Commission of final implementing measures.

My Department continues to be committed to delivering full compliance on all three Directives.