Page 6 - European Energy Innovation - Spring 2015 publication
P. 6
pring 2015 European Energy Innovation

Why Europe need a strong Energy Union

By Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy the environment spokesman of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe

The European and sustainability. If Europe on the economic governance
Commission recently modernises its houses and offices, framework, the EU should set up
presented a proposal for updates its transport means and an “Energy Pack” that will keep all
one of its most important allows smart technologies and 28 Member States on track. The
flagship projects: the creation of ICT innovations, we could save Commission must monitor and
a European Energy Union. If done incredible amounts of currently strictly enforce the rules regarding
right, it could lead to the delivery wasted energy. A clear focus the Energy Union, but also the
of a genuine single European on energy efficiency will boost implementation of the targets that
energy market with increased investment and potentially create will be set in the EU 2030 climate
competition and lower energy millions of jobs, for instance in and energy framework – those
costs. It could increase energy the building sector, but also in include a drastic reduction of
efficiency, create millions of new Europe’s troubled manufacturing CO2 emissions, and an increasing
jobs, make Europe the leader industries. It is a crucial condition, use of renewable energy.
again in the fight against climate if we are to achieve the EU’s goal
change and make Europe a more to reduce emissions up to 95% in Fourthly, Europe’s advanced
attractive place for companies 2050. position in clean technologies
to invest in. Moreover, European needs to be maintained by
energy independence would be Secondly, we must establish boosting research and innovation.
a blow to Russia’s geopolitical a competitive and integrated We must enhance cooperation
significance and make Europe energy market within the EU. between researchers by better
more independent from third Liberalisation measures, such targeting existing European
country energy suppliers. as the Third Energy Package, funds. Particular attention
are underway, but EU Member should go to bridging the gap
But it will only work if Europe States have been too reluctant between the pre-commercial
dares to propose an Energy to implement these laws. They demonstration stage and
Union with teeth. We need to have made little effort to invest the actual marketing of new
invest substantially in energy in interconnections with other technologies, bringing economies
efficiency, renewables and energy grids and they too of scale.
infrastructure the coming years. often act only to protect their
If we make the right choices now own semi-state owned energy Finally, special attention needs
Europe will have cheap, clean and companies. While in fact, a more to be given to the business side
secure energy in abundance. This integrated single market in of the Energy Union. The single
requires concrete actions in five energy could result in efficiency biggest barrier to investment
areas. gains of some 50 billion euros a is regulatory uncertainty, with
year. We need to overcome the national and Union policy
Europe urgently needs a much current fragmentation of energy frameworks changing constantly.
more ambitious energy efficiency policy into 28 different systems Investors will only put their
strategy. The potential benefits and reaping the full benefits of a money in the many projects of the
of becoming more efficient are common European. Energy Union if the associated
enormous! The International regulatory framework is put in
Energy Agency even calls energy In order to secure a functioning place, environmental legislation
efficiency the world’s “first fuel” by Energy Union, strong European is predictable and competition
virtue of its lowest cost, availability governance is essential. Modelled policy is sound. This also applies
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