Greece referred to court and Germany given final warning for not transposing the Energy Efficiency Directive


The European Commission is referring Greece to the EU Court of Justice for not transposing the Energy Efficiency Directive. This stipulates that EU countries must meet certain energy savings targets from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2020. They must do this by using energy efficiency obligations schemes or other measures to drive energy efficiency improvements in households, buildings, industry and transport.

Under the Energy Efficiency Obligations Schemes, companies have to take measures to ensure energy savings at final customer level, for example by giving advice on installing better insulation or offering grants for replacing old energy-wasting windows. Member states were required to transpose the obligations of the Directive by 5 June 2014.

Other requirements under the Directive include:

  • energy audits for big companies every four years;
  • increased rights for consumers regarding metering and billing of their energy consumption;
  • renovation of at least 3% of central government buildings every year; and
  • and energy efficient public purchasing.

In February 2015, the Commission reminded Greece of its obligations, but to date, no legislation transposing the Directive has been transposed into national law.

A daily penalty of €29 145,60 has been proposed iin view of the duration and the seriousness of the infringement. If the court confirms the Commission’s view, the  penalty would have to be paid from the date of the judgment or a later date set by the court until the Directive has been transposed. The court will decide the final amount of the daily penalty, but cannot exceed the Commission’s proposal.

The European Commission has also requested Germany to ensure the full transposition of the Energy Efficiency Directive. Germany has now two months to comply, following that it may be refered to the EU Court of Justice and fined.

Overall, 27 EU countries (all except Malta) had failed to fully transpose the Directive by the June 2014 deadline.