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Think Green Before You Apply: EU Competition Law and Climate-Change Abatement

Think Green Before You Apply: EU Competition Law and Climate-Change Abatement European Union (EU) competition law and the protection of the environment may not be the most obvious bedfellows. Nonetheless, how the EU competition rules can contribute to the EU’s mission to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 is a subject of keen debate – both by the European Commission (EC) and at Member State level. It is submitted, however, that the manner in which Article 101(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and the EU Merger Regulation (EUMR) are applied by the EC is unconducive to the achievement of the EU’s ambitious climate goals. As such, it requires adaptation. A principal, though not the only, stumbling block in this regard pertains to the EC’s insistence on the need to demonstrate economic ‘in-market’ efficiencies with a view to offsetting any alleged competition concerns. Environmental benefits, however, tend by definition to be ‘out-of-market’. Drawing upon recent developments at national level, in particular, this article therefore seeks to offer some food for thought on how the rules relating to Article 101(3) TFEU and the EUMR could be amended/ applied differently as a means of accommodating environmental benefits and supporting the 2050 climate neutrality objective. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png World Competition Law and Economics Review Kluwer Law International

Think Green Before You Apply: EU Competition Law and Climate-Change Abatement

World Competition Law and Economics Review , Volume 44 (2): 22 – Jun 1, 2021

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Publisher
Kluwer Law International
Copyright
Copyright © 2021 Kluwer Law International BV, The Netherlands
ISSN
1011-4548
Publisher site
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Abstract

European Union (EU) competition law and the protection of the environment may not be the most obvious bedfellows. Nonetheless, how the EU competition rules can contribute to the EU’s mission to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 is a subject of keen debate – both by the European Commission (EC) and at Member State level. It is submitted, however, that the manner in which Article 101(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and the EU Merger Regulation (EUMR) are applied by the EC is unconducive to the achievement of the EU’s ambitious climate goals. As such, it requires adaptation. A principal, though not the only, stumbling block in this regard pertains to the EC’s insistence on the need to demonstrate economic ‘in-market’ efficiencies with a view to offsetting any alleged competition concerns. Environmental benefits, however, tend by definition to be ‘out-of-market’. Drawing upon recent developments at national level, in particular, this article therefore seeks to offer some food for thought on how the rules relating to Article 101(3) TFEU and the EUMR could be amended/ applied differently as a means of accommodating environmental benefits and supporting the 2050 climate neutrality objective.

Journal

World Competition Law and Economics ReviewKluwer Law International

Published: Jun 1, 2021

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