Jan 13 2017

False memories

Indicative shares that were never there

The Impact Assessment says,

“Indicative shares for CCS and RES projects with a smooth spill over possibility between the groups were crucial under the NER 300 programme to ensure the allocation of all available funds.”

(The association EURIMA happens to agree, calling for the principle to be maintained: “Criteria should be flexible enough so as to avoid that part of the funds remain unused if some of the selected projects do not materialise (as might be the case with CCS in the current NER 300 facility).”)

There were no “indicative shares for CCS and RES” in NER300. The shares of funding for CCS and RES depended on the amount of NER300 funding requested by confirmed projects. There was no way before running the competition to know how many confirmed projects in CCS and RES there would be or how much each, on average, would ask for. The text claims the “possibility for smooth spill-over” was crucial, but rules made the magnitude and direction of the spill unpredictable. Furthermore, they were never applied (in the first call, there were 0 confirmed CCS projects; in the second, the funding available exactly managed the funding requested by all the eligible projects in the competition).

…of the reasons for projects not being ‘confirmed’

The Impact Assessment says, of the first call,

“36 [projects] were either not confirmed by Member States or could not be supported due to insufficient funds.”

It would have been more accurate to write,

“36 were not confirmed by Member States either because of the maximum-3-projects-per-Member-State rule or because the EC did not invite them to confirm them.”

The EC requested the MS to confirm only those projects mentioned in the Staff Working Document of July 2012:

“In order for the Commission to adopt award decisions by end 2012, all Member States with candidate or reserve projects on the list in the Annex are requested to proceed swiftly to confirm for all candidates support as well as the national funding contributions”

The consequence of this was that when, at the last minute, the ULCOS CCS project withdrew, there were no projects the EC could award instead.