Fortum’s position on EU Nature Restoration Regulation

flowing water

Fortum's key messages

  • Fortum supports the EU Biodiversity Strategy and its high ambitions to protect and restore species and habitats.
  • Biodiversity regulation should be aligned with climate change mitigation, renewable energy and security of supply goals.
  • High ambitions regarding biodiversity, that Fortum supports, should if needed, be supported by legislation which effects are carefully evaluated and overlapping regulation avoided.
  • The proposal for a Nature Restoration Regulation could have unforeseen negative consequences for the energy system, in particular for hydro and wind power, and power grids.
  • Fortum e.g., has a lot of hydro power plants located in areas of habitat types listed in the Annex.
  • The existing hydro power production, the future renewable energy production and the security of energy supply must be safeguarded.
  • The proposal includes unclear concepts and definitions that need to be clarified.
  • The cost-effectiveness and efficiency of the restoration measures must be ensured.
  • The flexibility of the regulation should be maintained, allowing Member States to define their own restoration measures.

Fortum proposes the following amendments to the commission proposal in order to safeguard the existing and future renewable energy production and the security of energy supply:

Art 4(new point): When putting in place the restoration measures referred to in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3, Member States shall address areas, which are those that are not needed for renewable energy generation.

Art 7 (2) Member States shall remove the barriers to longitudinal and lateral connectivity of surface waters identified under paragraph 1 of this Article, in accordance with the plan for their removal referred to in Article 12(2), point (f). When removing barriers, Member States shall (remove: primarily) address obsolete barriers, which are those that are no longer needed for renewable energy generation, inland navigation, water supply or other uses.

Art 11(6): “Member States shall coordinate the development of national restoration plans with the existing and future renewable energy production and the designation of the renewables go-to areas. During the preparation of the nature restoration plans, Member States shall safeguard the existing renewable energy production that helps to secure the energy supply and ensure synergies with the already designated renewables go-to areas and ensure that the functioning of the renewables go-to areas, including the permitting procedures applicable in the renewables go-to areas foreseen by Directive (EU) 2018/2001 remain unchanged.”