15 December 2022

On 9 December, EU policymakers reached an agreement on the Batteries Regulation. Flow Batteries Europe welcomes this historical agreement, as it will finally give the European Union a comprehensive piece of legislation to govern the social and environmental sustainability of batteries as a key energy storage technology.

The Batteries Regulation, proposed by the European Commission in December 2020, modernises the EU’s legislative framework for batteries pursuing three objectives: strengthening the functioning of the internal market by ensuring a level playing field through a common set of rules, promoting a circular economy and reducing environmental and social impacts throughout all stages of the battery life cycle.

As batteries become more and more present in our daily life, the Regulation and its tools, such as the Battery Passport, are of strategic importance to ensure a sustainable EU battery value chain. However, we must ensure that the text is future proof. As the current version of the Battery Passport focuses on batteries with internal storage, this excludes other important battery technologies, such as flow batteries. Flow Batteries Europe has continuously argued that excluding flow batteries would violate the technology-neutrality principle, unfairly disadvantage the sector, and fail to create sufficient incentives to increase the safety and environmental performance of the batteries. It is therefore crucial that policymakers in the coming years include flow batteries in the scope of the Regulation’s key safety and sustainability provisions, such as the Battery Passport.

Anthony Price, Secretary General of Flow Batteries Europe, commented: “For the energy system to become carbon neutral, we need not only more energy coming from renewable sources, but also adequate long-term energy storage technologies. Excluding flow batteries from the key obligations of the Batteries Regulation in the long term will endanger the competitiveness of the battery value chain, and the achievement of the decarbonisation goals set for 2050.”

The publication of the final version of the Batteries Regulation is expected in 2023.