Subsidies for green electricity permitted to restrict trade between EU member states — CJEU

By Adam Brown

It is normal for member states to make support for renewable generation available only to generators based in their own territory. Until recently, it was generally assumed that this was entirely consistent with EU law. Article 3(3) of the EU Renewables Directive (2009/28/EC) states that member states ‘shall have the right to decide… to which extent they support energy from renewable sources that is produced in a different member state’.

However, a case referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) by the Swedish courts called this into question. Ålands Vindkraft, the operator of a wind farm in the Åland Islands, applied to participate in the Swedish ‘green certificate’ scheme. Although connected to the Swedish grid, the project was in Finnish territory, and its application was refused on that ground, pursuant to the relevant Swedish law.

As well as the question whether that law was in line with the directive, the resulting appeal to the Swedish courts raised a more fundamental issue. Are schemes that restrict the availability of subsidy to home-grown renewables, and the provisions of the directive that ostensibly permit such restrictions, consistent with the EU treaties’ rules on the free movement of goods? …

Click on the link below to read the rest of the Dentons briefing.

Sign in or Register to continue reading this article

Sign in


It's quick, easy and free!

It takes just 5 minutes to register. Answer a few simple questions and once completed you’ll have instant access.

Register now

Why register to The Lawyer


Industry insight

In-depth, expert analysis into the stories behind the headlines from our leading team of journalists.


Market intelligence

Identify the major players and business opportunities within a particular region through our series of free, special reports.


Email newsletters

Receive your pick of The Lawyer's daily and weekly email newsletters, tailored by practice area, region and job function.

More relevant to you

To continue providing the best analysis, insight and news across the legal market we are collecting some information about who you are, what you do and where you work to improve The Lawyer and make it more relevant to you.

Analysis from The Lawyer

View more analysis from The Lawyer


1 Fleet Place

Qualified lawyers: 51
Partners: 12
Offices: 4

(International Top 50)