Legislative reform of the national electricity system – Energy and natural resources

0

To print this article, all you need to do is be registered or log in to Mondaq.com.

Decree-Law 15/2022 of January 14 (“Decree-Law 15/2022”) was published to establish the new rules for the organization and operation of the national electricity system (“SEN”). In doing so, it incorporates into Portuguese law (i) Directive (EU) 2019/944 of the European Parliament and of the Council on common rules for the internal market in electricity, and (ii) Directive (EU) 2018 /2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the promotion of the use of energy produced from renewable sources.

The approval of this decree-law follows the public consultation on the draft decree-law that took place last November, and the Energy and Natural Resources team of the PLMJ has published an information note on this subject.

In this note, we will present the main legislative changes resulting from the approval of this new law for the Portuguese electricity sector. In the description of these changes, we will focus in particular on the novelties of the final version now approved compared to the one which had been put out for public consultation.

Electricity production

Periods

“The one-year period from the granting of the production permit to obtain the operating permit is maintained, as proposed in the public consultation project.”

  • A period of 1 (one) year from the delivery of the capacity reservation authorization (capacity reserve title– “CRT“) is established to issue the production permit, when an environmental impact assessment (“EIA”) procedure must be carried out. Alternatively, if this procedure is not required, the maximum period is 6 (six) month deadline is set for these projects and this was not foreseen in the version submitted for public consultation.

  • The period of 1 (one) year from the granting of the production permit to obtain the operating permit is maintained, as proposed in the public consultation project. However, there are different rules for auctions. Instances where the operating license cannot be issued due to delays in grid connection processes are expressly considered exceptions to this deadline, and the possibility of extension is also maintained.

“The prohibition, proposed in the draft public consultation, of any change of control over the promoter until the issuance of the operating license has been removed. In addition, the rules relating to the transfer of the license itself have also been relaxed.

Transfer of license and change of control

  • The prohibition, proposed in the draft public consultation, of any change of control over the promoter until the issue of the operating permit is removed. In addition, the rules regarding the transfer of the license itself have also been relaxed.

  • The new rules assimilate the cases of transfer of license and change of control of the licensee. They also make the authorization of both conditional on the increase of the deposit by half of the legally established amount. Thus, the increase in security aims to deter purely speculative transactions.

  • The cost of holdings for the benefit of the granting entities and the establishment by the operator of SPVs wholly owned by it to develop the project are not subject to any increase in security.

Network connection and license

  • Legislative Decree 15/2022 maintains the provision of the public consultation project that allows the public service of the electricity network (“RESP“) operators to modify the connection level of the substation or the network (except in the case of TRC awarded following a call for tenders). However, the reasons for this change are specified (technical reasons and reasons not attributable to the applicant) and the reference to the possibility of this modification being made at the request of the applicant is deleted.

  • The decree-law also maintains the proposal of the public consultation project which makes the issuance of a TRC in general form subject to the prior payment of compensation to the electricity system of €1,500.00 per MVA. However, it is unclear if the value of the co-funding with the networks will be maintained and what will happen if the TRC expires due to the opening of an auction.

  • Access to the network in the form of an agreement with the network operator depends on the annual setting of a quota by the member of the Government in charge of energy, as proposed in the public consultation project. This can be differentiated by technology and by generation for self-consumption, and the procedure for selecting projects in this form is highly regulated. The final version now approved specifies that the signing of agreements between applicants for agreement requests and ORDs (distribution network operators) is subject to the existence or creation of reception capacities on the national transmission network ( “RNT“) substations that supply the national distribution network (“RND“) in the areas covered by these requests for agreement.

  • In the case of auctions, the recognition of the public interest and the public utility for all legal purposes of the installation of power generation plants and their lines is maintained, as had been proposed in the draft public consultation. However, in the final approved version, it is expressly specified that this recognition is relevant, in particular, for the creation of easements and expropriation for public purposes.

To read the full article, click here

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

POPULAR ARTICLES ON: Portugal‘s Energy and Natural Resources

Mining Comparative Guide

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Mining comparative guide for UK jurisdiction, see our comparative guides section to compare across multiple countries

JET sets a new record

JA Kemp LLP

The new record of 59 megajoules after a five-second reaction is nearly three times the previous record of 21.7 megajoules.

Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.