Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,

We herewith inform you about updates and clarifications in the ISCC System. Please share this information with all relevant members of staff.

Update on NUTS 02 Values
Joint Communication from Voluntary Schemes

Concerning our recent joint communication on NUTS 02 values [1] (see ISCC System Update dated 27 October 2023), we’d like to update the available information after we received a letter from the European Commission on this matter on Tuesday 12th December 2023.

In this letter the Commission confirms its position “…that since the entry into force of Directive (EU) 2018/2001 (RED II) the NUTS values submitted under Directive 2009/28/EC [old NUTS values] are no longer automatically applicable and promised to investigate whether a further transition period would still be possible. …”

As a result of this investigation, the Commission states in its latest letter that “…NUTS-values differing from the default values for Annex V can therefore only be applied if recognised by the Commission through an implementing act. Consequently, it is not possible for the Commission to grant a further transition period, as requested by some of the Member States and by industry stakeholders, as this would have to be done through a co-legislation process. …”

It’s now the responsibility of the Member States to provide updated NUTS 02 values to be assessed and confirmed by the European Commission according to the current legal requirements. 
In light of this situation we, the voluntary schemes, have agreed on the following:

  1. Biomass harvested in 2023 benefits from the published NUTS 02 values, because of the protection of legitimate expectations. The NUTS 02 value is preserved along the value chain until the declaration of the finished biofuel. 
  2. The harvest 2024 will have the opportunity to be flagged with ‘new’ NUTS 02 values provided that these values have been covered by a Commission Decision. Please note that the possibility of using default and actual values remains unchanged.

[1] To determine the GHG emissions from cultivation the RED II allows, next to the actual calculation or the application of default values, the use of typical values that represent the average value in a specific area. Those typical values have to be reported to the European Commission by Member States or third countries and can be used if the Commission recognizes them to be accurate. Those typical values are often referred to as NUTS 02 values, as they describe the emissions from the cultivation of agricultural raw materials of the areas on a Member Stated territory classified as level 2 in the nomenclature of territorial units for statistics (NUTS) (see Art. 31(2) RED II).

Update on the Union Database (UDB)

The EC UDB Team has confirmed that the official start date of opening the application has been postponed until 15 January 2024 to allow a smoother start and better support to the Economic Operators. This means that the UDB application will be available to all successfully registered Economic Operators for transactions registration in the liquid fuels supply chain as from 15 January 2024.

Please note that the UDB must be set up and fully operational to enable the tracing of liquid and gaseous renewable fuels by 21 November 2024, as stated in the Article 31 a of the revised RED II.

The UDB team has also confirmed that they will provide training sessions per voluntary schemes after 15 January 2024. A pre-requisite for the participants would be to carefully read the user guides and the associated videos, which will be provided by the UDB team by 15 January 2024. ISCC is currently clarifying the details and the timeline for the trainings. Once this has been defined and coordinated with the UDB team, ISCC we inform all its system users.   

ISCC awaits confirmation regarding the UDB design freeze by the UDB team. After confirmation, testing of the UI and eDelivery services will be performed. Based on the test findings, all related applications (e.g. the ISCC HUB and the ISCC Transaction Database) will need to be adapted and tested again. After the changes have been implemented, ISCC will conduct pilots with various system users. 

Additionally, ISCC has requested the promotion to the UDB production environment in order to connect the ISCC HUB and transfer organizational and certificate data. The promotion is still pending.