Projects of common interest (PCIs)
The Infrastructure Regulation contains a process for identifying projects of common interest (PCIs) that are a central piece for the realisation of the trans-European energy infrastructure priority corridors and areas. Under this framework, energy infrastructure includes in particular:
• High-voltage overhead lines, underground and submarine transmission cables, and electricity storage facilities;
• Electricity smart grids
• Gas transmission pipelines, along with reception, storage and regasification or decompression facilities for liquefied natural gas (LNG) and compressed natural gas (CNG); and
• Infrastructure such as pipelines used to transport crude oil and carbon dioxide transport projects.
Projects that are granted PCI status potentially qualify for a variety of preferential treatment measures under the Infrastructure Regulation. These are briefly explained below.
Only projects that fulfil the following criteria can be included in the PCI list:
• A PCI must be necessary to implement one of the energy infrastructure corridors or areas set out in Annex I to the Regulation;
• A PCI must concern at least two Member States (or one Member State and one EEA country); and
• A PCI’s potential overall benefits must outweigh its costs.
• Electricity and gas projects must, in addition, considerably contribute to market integration, competition (for gas projects only), sustainability or security of supply.
The proposed electricity and gas projects must be included in the last national ten-year network development plan (TYNDP) prepared by ENTSO-E or ENTSOG.
The PCI list is updated every other year.
The Infrastructure Regulation provides that in a first step towards the Union list, national regulators, member states, system operators, the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) and the European Commission come together in regional groups to discuss PCI candidates on the basis of the ten-year network development plans. Following a public consultation and an ACER opinion, European Commission and member states together decide which projects make it onto the final list. Then, the European Commission adopts the Union list as a delegated act.
For further information about PCIs, please consult the European Commission’s website: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/infrastructure/pci/pci_en.htm
The Commission’s website also contains an interactive map with an overview of PCIs and links for details on the individual projects: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/infrastructure/transparency_platform/map-viewer/
EC map of PCIs; source: European Commission vergrößern