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"Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme (2003-2006)

This summary has been archived and will not be updated, because the summarised document is no longer in force or does not reflect the current situation.

"Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme (2003-2006)

This Decision establishes a new multiannual programme for action in the field of energy. It reflects the European Union's current objectives in this field, namely sustainable development and security of supply, which reflects the European Union's current objectives in this field, namely sustainable development and security of supply.


Decision No 1230/2003/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2003 adopting a multiannual programme for action in the field of energy: "Intelligent Energy -- Europe" (2003-2006) [Official Journal L 176 of 15.7.2003].


Energy and transport play a large part in climate change since they are the leading sources of greenhouse gas emissions; this is why energy policy is particularly important in the European Union's sustainable development strategy. The EU is increasingly dependent on energy imported from Non-EU Member Countries, creating economic, social, political and other risks for the Union.

The EU therefore wishes to reduce its dependence and improve its security of supply by promoting other energy sources and cutting demand for energy. Consequently, it is putting the accent, above all, on improving energy efficiency and promoting renewable energy sources.

This programme ensures the continuity of EU action as developed in the previous energy framework programme (1998-2002).


This new programme is aimed at providing financial support for local, regional and national initiatives in the field of renewable energy, energy efficiency, the energy aspects of transport, and international promotion. The budget is 200 million for the period 2003-2006.

The specific aims are:

- to provide the necessary factors to promote energy efficiency and develop renewable energy sources with a view to reducing energy consumption and CO2 emissions;

- to develop resources and instruments which can be used by the Member States to monitor and evaluate the impact of the measures adopted by the Member States;

- to promote efficient and intelligent schemes for the production and consumption of energy, based on solid and sustainable foundations, through awareness-raising and education.

To achieve these aims, the programme must ensure that there is a real change in energy behaviour in the EU on the part of individuals as well as industry and enterprise. It must also develop instruments to ensure effective follow-up, monitoring and evaluation.

Fields of action

The programme is divided into four fields, some of which match the earlier programmes to provide and reinforce continuity:

Key actions

The programme is structured around key actions for each field of action and funding is directed towards measures or projects concerned with:

  • promotion of sustainable development, security of energy supply, competitiveness and environmental protection. Projects may include the development of standards and of labelling and certification systems and the monitoring of developments on the markets and energy trends;
  • creation, enlargement and promotion of structures and instruments for sustainable energy development, such as local and regional energy management, and the development of financial products;
  • promotion of systems and equipment in order to speed up market penetration by the best available technologies;
  • development of information, education and training structures to raise public awareness and dissemination of know-how and best practices;
  • monitoring of the implementation and impact of EU sustainable energy policy;
  • evaluation of the impact of projects funded under the programme.


The EU contribution may not exceed 50% of the cost of the measure; the rest may be covered by either public or private funds or by a combination of the two. However, certain exceptions are allowed: for example, the EU aid may cover the full cost of action to evaluate the impact of the measures and coordinate them more closely.

Indicative budgetary amounts are set for each specific field. The budgetary allocation is flexible in order to respond more fully to changing needs in the sector.


The Commission, assisted by a committee, will be responsible for the implementation of the programme. It will set the objectives and guidelines, and be in charge of project selection, etc.

Implementation of the programme will require a big increase in staff because the programme covers a wider range than its predecessor. In the present situation, given the nature of the action planned, the Commission considers that one option for management of the programme would be to set up an agency to implement it, under the supervision of the Commission; the agency could perform certain tasks relating to management and monitoring of the programme, such as drawing up recommendations on implementation of the programme and managing some or all phases of the projects.


The programme is open to any legal, public or private person established in the territory of the EU, the candidate countries and the countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and the European Economic Area (EEA).


The Commission will carry out an annual examination of progress on this programme. During the second year of application of the programme and before the Commission puts forward proposals on any subsequent programme, independent experts will carry out an external evaluation of the programme.


The multiannual programme for action in the field of energy, "Intelligent Energy for Europe", implements the broad lines of action described in the Green Paper on the European Strategy for security of energy supply. This Green Paper aims at strengthening the security of energy supply, combating climate change and boosting the competitiveness of EU businesses.

The Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme, which is a specific sub-programme of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (2007-13), allows the 2003-06 Intelligent Energy programme to continue.



Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Decision No 1230/2003/EC




Intelligent Energy for Europe - Decision No 1639/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 2006 establishing a Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme [Official Journal L 310 of 9.11.2006].

Commission Green Paper of 8 March 2006: "A European Strategy for Sustainable, Competitive and Secure Energy" [COM(2006) 105 final - Not published in the Official Journal]. This Green Paper outlines the new European energy policy, which aims to achieve sustainable, competitive and secure energy. It takes over from the current programme, Intelligent Energy for Europe (2003-2006).

Commission Decision of 23 December 2003 setting up an executive agency, the "Intelligent Energy Executive Agency", to manage Community action in the field of energy in application of Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003. The Agency is responsible for implementing the tasks concerning Community aid under the programme, except for programme evaluation, monitoring of legislation and strategic studies, or any other action which comes under the exclusive competence of the Commission.

The Agency is responsible for the following tasks:

  • managing all the phases in the lifetime of specific projects in the context of implementing the "Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme on the basis of the work programme;
  • adopting the instruments of budget implementation for revenue and expenditure and carrying out all the operations necessary to manage the Community programme and, in particular, those linked to the award of contracts and grants;
  • gathering, analysing and passing on to the Commission all the information needed to guide the implementation of the Community programme.

See also

Further details on the "Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme are available on the Directorate-General for Energy and Transport website.

Last updated: 10.05.2007