Workshop: Connecting Europe – Exploring Europe's role in delivering a decarbonised future

Co-organised by the Renewables Grid Initiative (RGI) and EEB within the framework of the PAC Scenario, the 'Connecting Europe' workshop is a part of RGI's 'Connecting Energies' Training Series, tailored for European civil society organisations wanting to learn more about the role of electricity grids in delivering decarbonisation targets.

As more renewable energy sources are being integrated into the energy system, the task of expanding, enhancing, and modernising electricity grid becomes ever more apparent. The pivotal role of interconnectors—high-capacity, cross-border cables linking national electricity grids—cannot be overstated. By enabling the seamless flow of electricity in response to supply, demand, and pricing dynamics, interconnectors are crucial for integrating the variable outputs of wind and solar sources in an economically efficient and sustainable manner.

Acknowledging their significance, the European Commission has set forth targeted objectives and support frameworks to facilitate the development of cross-border energy infrastructure. This ambitious endeavour materialises through the conception of Projects of Common Interest (PCIs), which are key cross-border infrastructure projects with a significance for at least two EU Member States. These projects, selected biennially since 2013, once approved by the European Parliament and the Council, gain access to expedited planning and permitting procedures, streamlined environmental assessments, and financial backing from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).

To speed-up the realisation of interconnected electricity systems, the European Union established a definitive goal of achieving at least a 15% interconnection rate by 2030. As articulated in Article 9 of the revised Renewable Energy Directive (RED), EU Member States are enjoined to foster cooperative frameworks and embark on shared ventures, with a target of at least two such projects per Member State by the close of 2030.

As Europe continues to deploy electricity grids across borders, the role of civil society in promoting a just, nature-positive electricity system is imperative. Watch this second session of the Connecting Energies: Training Series for European Civil Society to delve deep into the policy and funding frameworks for an interconnected Europe and discover ways civil society can have an impact. 


Oana LangaPolicy Officer at European Commission, Directorate General for Energy, provided an overview of the development of a European grid, and, the Commission’s role in selecting and co-financing grid projects with a focus on Projects of Common Interest (PCIs) and the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). 

Andrzej CeglarzProgramme Manager – Socio-Energy Systems at RGI, examined how civil society can contribute to European grid planning with a focus on the Paris Agreement Compatible (PAC) Scenarios for Energy Infrastructure project.

Hans-Christian SeeligerProject Manager 50Hertz gave an in-depth look at a PCI project – the Combined Gris Solution around the Kriegers Flak offshore wind park, focusing on the cooperation and implementation of the joint German-Danish project from start to finish. 

Angelika Grohmann-Wörle, Lead Offshore Development Germany at TenneT, explored offshore grid implementation in the European context, underlined the importance of a meshed offshore grid, and gave insights into the North Sea Wind Power Hub PCI.

This session was moderated by Stephanie Bätjer, Programme Manager - Communication at RGI, and, Cosimo Tansini, Policy Officer for Renewable Energy at the European Environmental Bureau.



Connecting Energies

The Renewables Grid Initiative invites members of European civil society organisations to an enlightening three-part training series, 'Connecting Energies', where we explore the intricate relationship between electricity grids, the energy transition, and biodiversity. 

In the first two online sessions, we delve into the role of electricity grids in the energy transition, the role of interconnectors between Member States in delivering the EU’s climate and energy targets, and how policy frameworks can be used to reach climate neutrality. 

The final session, held in Berlin, will uncover the critical connection between electricity infrastructure and bird conservation. Participants are invited to apply insights from the previous sessions to the challenge of protecting biodiversity along grid infrastructure and provide input to a shared outcome document to be disseminated publicly. 


Morjana Moreira dos Anjos
Renewables Grid Initiative

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t: +49 30 2332 11000

Cosimo Tansini

+32 2 289 10 90

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author only and do not necessarily reflect those of the EU or LIFE Programme. Neither the EU nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.