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The European Commission’s role in assessing the sustainability of gas projects on the list of 'projects of regional significance' of the 'Energy Community'

The complaint concerns the selection of 'projects of regional significance' by the Energy Community, which is an international organisation that brings together the EU, countries in the Western Balkans and in the Black Sea Region and Norway. The complainant considers that the Commission failed to ensure that the sustainability of candidate gas projects is adequately assessed, before they are included on this list. This is because the applicable sustainability assessment uses a similar methodology to one formerly used for assessing EU 'projects of common interest', which the Commission has since deemed to be inadequate.

The Ombudsman opened an inquiry and asked the Commission to reply to questions concerning its role in the process. The Ombudsman has received the Commission's reply and is considering the next steps.