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Study on energy subsidies for the European Commission

27 Oct 2021

Enerdata and its partner Trinomics carried out a study on energy subsidies, required by the European Commission to release its annual report to the European Parliament

We performed this study thanks to our research capabilities and our network of experts in the EU27 Member States (MS).

We found out that the overall subsidy amount slightly increased since 2015, reaching €176bn in 2019, and we estimated it to €177bn in 2020. Our research also pointed out that energy subsidy reporting is getting more transparent over the past years. However, fossil fuel subsidies (FFS) reporting remains a hurdle, holding back the potential for action on the related issues. In addition, we discovered that no comprehensive FFS phase-out plan has yet been implemented in the MSs’ finance laws.

Our work also revealed significant variations in the interpretation of energy subsidies between the MSs and our methodology, as well as between the content of the national energy and climate plans (NECPs) and our research.

Eventually, we studied energy related COVID-19 response measures in MS Recovery and Resilience Plans (RRPs). We identified more than 500 ‘green’ recovery measures that will contribute directly or indirectly to the MSs clean energy transition, for a total of €237bn investment, including €20.7bn for hydrogen. Those measures aim at decarbonising the transport sector and the building stock and facilitating the production and adoption of renewable energy sources.

Read the "Study on energy subsidies and other government interventions in the European Union", written by Enerdata, part of the Sixth report on the state of the energy union.”

Monitoring of energy subsidies in the European Union

March 31, 2021


After studies performed in 2018 and 2020, the Directorate-General for Energy of the European Commission has awarded a new contract to Enerdata and its partner Trinomics to continue the monitoring of energy subsidies in the EU27. The outcomes of this study are essential because the European Commission intends to use them in their reports on energy subsidies and specifically fossil fuel subsidies to comply with governance requirements.

As project leader, Enerdata will collect, monitor, and analyse the evolution of subsidy amounts granted by the EU Member States since 2008 with a particular attention to the years 2019 and 2020. The study will also analyse the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the subsidy amounts in 2020 to determine whether the evolution observed is structural or cyclical.

Moreover, we will explore the discrepancies of interpretation of the energy subsidies between the definition resulting from our previous work and the definition used by Member States, and provide an overview of the policies implemented by Member States to phase-out fossil fuels.

European Commission study on energy prices, costs and their impact on industry and households

November 16, 2020


The European Commission just released the Study on energy prices, costs and their impact on industry and households. Enerdata had a key role in this project, together with Trinomics, Cambridge Economics and LBST. This study initiated by the Directorate-General for Energy (European Commission) focuses on the analysis and drivers of energy prices in the EU and G20 countries, power technologies profitability (hourly power generation and prices, subsidies, power generation costs) and energy costs in industry.

Enerdata led Task 1 – Analysis of energy prices and Task 3 - Power technologies profitability and hourly data collection, a new part compared to the previous version of this study. The aim of task 3 was to assess the impact of hourly power generation and price variations on power technologies, covering EU + G20 and 2008-2018 time period. It included data collection and data process of hourly data, profitability analysis of power technologies including cost and revenues (from government supports and market) assessment.

Realised price (actual price captured by a technology/power plant) was a typical indicator built and assessed as part of this study.

realised price

Source: Enerdata, Study on energy prices, costs and their impact on industry and households-EC

Download the report


 Our study on energy subsidies for the European Commission has been published

October 14, 2020

As part of its State of the Energy Union report, the European Commission has released its analysis of energy subsidies based on the Study on energy costs, taxes and the impact of government interventions on investments prepared by Enerdata and its partners Trinomics, Cambridge Econometrics, VITO and LBST.

Our study highlights that fossil fuels subsidies in the EU27 are stable at around 50 billion euros since 2008 while its Members States have pledged for phasing-out this kind of public support. Our study, which also covered all G20 countries, revealed that China’s fossil fuels subsidies reached no less than 27 billion euros in 2018, slightly above the 26 billion recorded in the United States.

Conversely, subsidies to renewable technologies are still on the rise in the EU27, although we have noticed that the pace of increase slowed down since 2015 due to lower cost and better controlled support policies. The EU27 remains leader for renewable energy support with 73 billion euros in 2018, far more than amounted recorded in Japan, the UK, the USA, and China.

Thanks to a network of 40 country experts, Enerdata also collected, monitored and analysed detailed information on the levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) and heat (LCOH) in the G20, as well as provided a thorough analysis of energy taxation in all G20 countries.

Download the report

 Prices and cost of energy – Study for the European Commission DG Energy

February 10, 2020

In the continuation of a previous project completed in 2018, Enerdata, in partnership with Trinomics and LBST, is launching a new data collection and analysis project in relation to energy prices for the European Commission (DG Energy).

It aims to gather a better understanding of the key factors affecting the cost of energy in the European Union, and how they influence investments in the energy sector. Another target is to comprehend which externalities are born by society which are not included in the market cost of energy.

The newest part of the project is the collection of hourly data for energy prices and energy production by technology. The aim is to analyse the competitiveness of the power generation sectors, taking into account costs, market prices and subsidies.

The previous study focused on prices, costs and subsidies for energy in Europe, by evaluating the role of competition in the formation of prices – both wholesale and retail – and analysing the impact of energy bills on household budgets, as well as on the competitiveness of European industries (by industrial sectors) in the global market. You can read the full study here.

Download the full study

Enerdata Continues Helping European Commission Monitor Fossil Fuel Subsidy Phase-Out

April 19, 2019

Following the success of the recently published study on energy prices, costs and subsidies in Europe, the Directorate-General for Energy of the European Commission has awarded a contract extending the study to Enerdata and partners Trinomics, Cambridge Econometrics and VITO. The new contract began in April 2019 and last one year.

The project is designed to help build the legislative foundation of the late-2018 regulation titled Governance of the Energy Union and Climate Action, which is available here. The purpose of that regulation is to achieve the EU’s 2030 and long-term climate goals, in line with the Paris Agreement.

We at Enerdata will contribute our expertise on energy subsidies and energy taxation systems, by providing both a reliable theoretical framework and a thorough fact-based analysis. By doing so, Enerdata will help the European Commission define the reporting that Member States should implement to phase out energy subsidies, and especially fossil fuel subsidies. The new project will also extend the geographical scope of the original project, which was limited to the European Union, to also include all G20 countries. 


EU Publishes Enerdata Prices, Costs and Subsidies Study

January 10, 2019

The European Commission recently published a report summarizing the main conclusions of a study conducted by Enerdata and partners Trinomics and Cambridge Econometrics.The study focuses on prices, costs and subsidies for energy in Europe, by evaluating the role of competition in the formation of prices – both wholesale and retail – and analysing the impact of energy bills on household budgets, as well as on the competitiveness of European industries (by industrial sectors) in the global market. Enerdata coordinated a network of experts in the EU’s 28 member states who were tasked with identifying and quantifying energy subsidies.

Our work showed that energy-related subsidies have increased 12%, from 150 billion euros in 2008 to 168 billion in 2016. This growth in public financing for the energy, transport and agriculture sectors in the EU can be explained by the strong support for renewable energy production in the member states (which totalled 75 billion euros in 2016), in line with European commitments.

Even more surprising – and contrary to the European goal of eliminating fossil fuel subsidies – support for hydrocarbons increased slightly to 55 billion euros in 2016, of which 28 billion went to petroleum products. In total, energy consumption and production subsidies were almost 90% of the 2016 total. Subsidies for research and development, and energy efficiency were just slightly more than 10% of the total disbursed in 2016.

Download the report