The approval of the Bill brings an end to a administrative process that has been more than one year in the making. The Council of Ministers, in effect, took into account the first Draft Bill dated 22 February 2019, which was submitted to public consultation and successive reports issued by the different Ministries, considerations from the Advisory Council for the Environment and the Sector Conference of the Autonomous Regions, a report issued by the Spanish National Markets and Competition Commission (the “CNMC”) and a report issued by the State Council. The text finally sent to Parliament contains the modifications made to the initial Draft Bill throughout that process.
The Bill is long (it has 36 articles, 4 additional provisions, 2 transitional provisions, a derogatory provision and 13 final provisions) and, as well as its own inherent provisions, it also modifies a number aspects of pre-existing laws, including The Spanish Electricity Sector Law 24/2013, of 26 December (“LSE”), the Spanish Hydrocarbons Law 34/1998, of 7 October (“LSH”), Law 18/2014, of 15 October, on the approval of urgent measures for growth, competitiveness and efficiency (“Law 18/2014”), Law 15/2012, of 27 December, on fiscal measures for energy sustainability (“Law 15/2012”) and Law 3/2013, of 4 June, on the creation of the Spanish National Markets and Competition Commission (“Law 3/2013”).
The press release issued by the Government after the Bill was approved stated that it contains Spain’s transversal response to the challenge posed by climate change, covering “all economic sectors connected to climate action, from energy generation and finance, to primary sectors, transport, industry and the public authorities and administrations”.
The Bill was published in the Official Journal of Spanish Parliament on 29 May, which opened the process for the Congress of Deputies and the Senate to approve the Bill; the first period to submit amendments ends on 16 June.
We include below the Bill’s most significant content in relation to energy.