The French National Assembly and the Senate adopted the final text of the "Climate and Resilience" law on 20 July. The law was enacted on 24 August, after the Constitutional Council validated most of its provisions.
Regional objectives: Under the chapter entitled "Promoting renewable energies", Article 22 of the law requires that regional objectives for the development of renewable energies will be established by decree after consultation with the regional councils concerned, in order to contribute to the objectives of France's energy policy.
Wind energy: For the wind energy sector, Article L.181-28-2 of the Environmental Code is supplemented by provisions requiring the project owner to respond, within one month, to the observations of the mayor of the municipality in which the project is to be located, following the transmission of the non-technical summary, indicating the changes to the project that are proposed to reflect these observations.
Biogas certificate: Article 22 bis K of the law provides for the implementation of an additional production support system through the creation of biogas production certificates. They will be issued to producers in proportion to the quantity of biogas injected into the natural gas network, provided that the production facilities meet the conditions set out in the new Article L. 446-38 of the Energy Code. The distributors will have to ensure a minimum rate of certified biogas in their networks.
Greener industrial buildings: Article 24 of the law reinforces the obligation to install vegetation or renewable energy production facilities when constructing and renovating industrial and commercial buildings. This obligation will come into force on 1 January 2023.
Photovoltaic: Article 24 bis allows the administrative authorities to authorise solar energy production installations on wasteland located in coastal areas. By way of derogation from Article L. 121-8 of the Town Planning Code, solar installations may be installed even if they do not comply with the rule of continuity of urbanisation. A decree will determine the list of wastelands in which these authorisations may be issued.
Validation of specifications
It should also be noted that the French aid scheme to support renewable energies was also validated by the European Commission on 27 July 2021.
Aid will be granted to operators of renewable energy production facilities through seven competitive tenders: solar on the ground, solar on buildings, onshore wind, hydroelectric installations, innovative solar, self-consumption and a technology-neutral tender. These tenders will be organised between 2021 and 2026 for a total of 34 GW.
The total amount of aid is €30.5 billion, and the aid can be paid for a maximum of 20 years from the date of connection of the installations to the electricity grid.
The Commission confirmed that the aid was necessary for the further development of renewable energy production and found the scheme to be in line with EU state aid rules.