Edited by Martin Trybus and Luca Rubini
Chapter 15: EU External Energy Policy: The Legal and Policy Impact of the New Competence
Bart van Vooren 1. INTRODUCTION Is a common external energy policy for the Union a desirable Utopia, the beginning of a trend, or rather a mature part of EU external relations? Developments towards the EU internal energy market have been ongoing for quite a few years, though an EU external energy policy did not follow suit, and did not attain political prominence until around 2005. Since then, an avalanche of policy documents and initiatives have emerged aiming to formulate an EU external policy. These efforts and policy rhetoric notwithstanding, disputes over the North Stream, South Stream and Nabucco pipelines,1 and Member States’ individual deals with Russia/Gazprom have been illustrative of the EU’s inability to project a single external voice in the sphere of energy policy. In December 2009 the Lisbon Treaty explicitly conferred powers in the sphere of energy (Article 194 TFEU). While that article does not explicitly refer to its external dimension, the goal of this chapter is to explore what – if any – impact the new legal basis of the Lisbon Treaty may have on the formulation and instruments to execute EU (external) energy policy. In this chapter I ﬁrst set out the state of play on EU energy policy, outlining the three pillars on which it is based and as they developed since 2005: security of supply, within a competitive market, while ensuring its environmental sustainability. This then forms the basis for the second 1 See for example: Euractiv, ‘Russia “threatening Nabucco”’, 27 January 2009. In...
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