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What is the Union database (UDB)?

The "Union database" is the database provided for according to Article 28(2) of Directive (EU) 2018/2001.


Legal basis of the Union database for biofuels (UDB):

Article 28 (2) of Directive (EU) 2018/2001, the so-called RED II, provides for the establishment of a single and mandatory database at European level covering all sustainability certificates for biofuels in the transport sector and the corresponding feedstocks. In detail, this means:

‘(2).The Commission shall ensure that a Union database is put in place to enable the tracing of liquid and gaseous transport fuels that are eligible for being counted towards the numerator referred to in point (b) of Article 27(1) or that are taken into account for the purposes referred to in points (a), (b), and (c) of the first subparagraph of Article 29(1). Member States shall require the relevant economic operators to enter into that database information on the transactions made and the sustainability characteristics of those fuels, including their life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions, starting from their point of production to the fuel supplier that places the fuel on the market. A Member State may set up a national database that is linked to the Union database ensuring that information entered is instantly transferred between the databases. Fuel suppliers shall enter the information necessary to verify compliance with the requirements laid down in the first and fourth subparagraphs of Article 25(1) into the relevant database. …’

 

Where can I find the UDB?

Here you can find the live version of the UDB, to which you will shortly have access.

Here you will find the public wiki page of the UDB.

Here you will find step-by-step instructions on how to access the UDB.

 

Who has access to the UDB?

Currently, every REDcert-EU scheme user's data has been transferred to the UDB. An invitation email for the acceptance (test) version was sent on March 31st 2023. An invitation for the live version of the UDB will follow shortly.

 

Who needs to use the UDB?

Entering information into the Union Database is mandatory for all REDcert-EU participants. It is a requirement of the European Commission that REDcert, as a certification scheme approved by the EU Commission, must implement with its scheme users and certification bodies.

Therefore, economic operators within the supply chain of biofuels (liquid and gaseous fuels) used in the transport sector and falling within the scope of the Renewable Energy Directive must complete the UDB with:

  • Information on raw materials (from the 1st collection point),
  • Information on sustainability and greenhouse gas emission savings,
  • Material processing / transformation
  • All transaction data on transports (purchase and sale) of raw materials or fuels.

So far, we know that transactions have to be registered within 72 hours after the trade date/dispatch. The sustainability certificate must be updated before the end of the mass balance period. The mass balance period can be selected in the UDB as annual (ATTENTION: only allowed for first-time registrants) or quarterly.

 

What is the timeline for the UDB?

The EU Commission is pursuing an ambitious timetable that foresees a functional UDB by the end of 2023 that can track all transactions of sustainable biomass and biofuels.

The following overview illustrates the historical timeline of the project:

Historical Timeline for the Union Database (UDB) Value Chain Timing
Start UDB Gas during Q1 2024
Start UDB Liquid  15th of January 2024*
(Initial stock levels can be entered from 01.01.2024)
Start: Registration of transaction (+online) Gas  2nd of October 2023
Start: Registration of transactions (System exchange only) Gas  1st of July 2023
Start: Registration of transactions Liquid  3rd of April 2023
Start: Gaseous value chain - Initial stock registration Gas  3rd of April 2023
Target date:
Value chain for gas - initial registration of stocks
Gas  1st of April 2023
Target date: Liquid fuel value chain - initial stock registration Liquid  31st of March 2023
Start: Liquid fuel value chain - initial stock registration of stocks Liquid 1st of March 2023
Start: Gas - Onboarding of DSO/TSO/suppliers on UDB Gas 6th of February 2023
Start: Onboarding of VS, EO, party DBs on UDB All  16th of January 2023
Publish Data Harmonization to the market All  12th of December 2022
Publish/begin communication to the VS/MS/market All  21st of November 2022

 

*The Union Database application will be available to all successfully registered economic operators for transactions registration in the liquid fuels supply chain as from 15th January 2024.

  • Regarding the official start date of the UDB and following several requests from the stakeholders, we have decided to open the application on the 15th of January 2024 to allow for a smoother start and better support to the economic operators. 

  • Initial stocks registration will be possible for the date of 1st January 2024 i.e. the stocks held as of beginning of 2024 by the certified Economic Operators. This feature will be available throughout the year 2024 for those Economic operators who may be onboarded in later part of 2024 to book the consignments as of 1st January 2024 provided they are certified as of this date. Economic operators should ensure that the amounts registered can be evidenced to the auditor during the audit.

  • Transactions can be registered retroactively from 1st January 2024 based on the initial stocks or transactions received from suppliers after 1st January 2024.

 

Where can I find training on the UDB?

The EU Commission has already offered the following training courses on the UDB, the recording of which can be found here.


You will also find user manuals, demo videos and other UDB training courses in English here.


You can find the UDB demo videos in German here (NEW!).

 

 

REDcert information on the subject of UDB

REDcert-INFO Issue 01/2023

REDcert-INFO Issue 02/2023

REDcert-INFO Issue 03/2023

Info-Mail from 8th of December 2023

Info-Mail from 18th of December 2023

If you have further specific questions about the UDB, you can send them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We ask for your understanding that, in view of the complexity of the topic and the numerous open questions that still need to be clarified with the UDB, we will not be able to answer every question immediately. However, we will endeavour to clarify such questions as quickly as possible.

Thank you for your understanding!

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