Journal Article / Energy Law & Policy
Differentiated Integration Revisited: EU energy policy as experimental ground for a Schengen successor?
For the EU-27 the accommodation of national diversity and conflicting preferences with regard to the pace and scope of the development of the EU energy policy remains a major problem. The resulting institutional paralysis, low reactivity to events and changes as well as systematic political horse-trading call for an alternative framework that allows some pioneering Member States to promote ad hoc common policies while escaping the formal and procedural requirements of EU law. The ‘Schengen agreement’ is a successful example of such differentiation. Following this example, this article argues that a 'Schengen-ing' of some areas of EU energy policy might move beyond the realm of theory. The possibility to move forwards by means of intergovernmental agreements between a number of Member States in certain areas of EU energy policy will be exemplified by two areas that are predestined for a Schengen successor: nuclear and gas security of supply policy.