The objectives of deepening the EU's single energy market and protecting the climate can conflict. Where they do, the European Commission should give priority to reducing carbon emissions. Its 2014 guidelines on state aid and energy strike the right balance: low-carbon energy is still more expensive than high-carbon coal, so subsidy is necessary, not only to support new technologies like carbon capture and storage or tidal power, but also to expand nuclear power. The Commission was right to allow state aid for nuclear in the UK, but its clearance of new subsidies to coal-fired power stations was wrong and should be reversed.
View the press release.
Written by Stephen Tindale
Stephen Tindale is a research fellow at the Centre for European Reform.