Energy Efficiency: Commission to put itself offside?

Allegedly, the Commission is planning to propose an astoundingly low indicative target on energy efficiency for 2030. “Bad for competitiveness, bad for jobs and the economy, bad for energy security, bad for climate, and bad for citizen’s energy bills” say leading industry in the building energy efficiency sector.

Brussels 19 June 2014

The supposed agreement to propose a 27 % non-binding target for energy efficiency in 2030 is a ‘less than business-as-usual scenario’ that would completely ignore the wide economic, social and environmental benefits of energy savings, and would be a disincentive for the much-needed energy renovation of the EU building stock.

“An eventual decision to play down the ambition of the overall target on energy efficiency would completely eliminate any possible strong action in the building sector” said Jan te Bos, Director-General at Eurima. In a recent letter to EU Commissioners, the five trade associations made a clear call for a solid 2030 climate and energy framework including an energy savings target for buildings.

“Even the Commission’s own research demonstrates that higher ambition on energy efficiency equals more jobs and growth” added Adrian Joyce, Secretary-General at EuroACE “this is why we have difficulty understanding how earlier, clear calls from the European Parliament and a significant portion of EU Member States asking for an ambitious binding energy efficiency target can suddenly disappear into thin air”.

“EU Heads of State clearly mandated the Commission to firmly address the energy security issue by moderating energy demand” added Bertrand Cazes, Secretary-General at Glass for Europe “failing to grasp the huge energy saving potential of existing buildings and thus failing to enhance our energy security would be an unaffordable mistake and a political disgrace for the legacy of this Commission”.

The associations call on the College of Commissioners to show ambition and vision and agree on a strong binding target on energy efficiency (40 % by 2030) based on the real potential of sectors. The contribution of buildings should be incentivised through a dedicated sectoral target. Research has demonstrated that a higher target brings higher benefits without increasing overall costs.

“The logic for such decision is, above all, economic” concluded Oliver Loebel, Managing Director at PU Europe “at a time when recovery remains weak in major parts of Europe, the building sector needs a strong push from EU policy-makers to develop its full growth and job creation potential”.

To the press release here